You folks posted alot of good comments yesterday following the discussion on increased Credit Card usage in the mixed retail post. Enough issues were raised that I tracked down some people at Visa to get a breakdown of the specific data regarding card usage over the weekend:
Spending on Friday/Saturday with Visa branded cards was over $7.068 billion dollars; This represents a 15% increase versus 2004.
• $3.84 B was consumer credit;
• $2.82 B was debit/check cards;
• $400M was Visa Commercial/Small Business cards (a form of commercial credit).
That means approximately 54% of the increase in card usage was added consumer debt.
Another interesting data point: E-Commerce was $544 million, a 32% increase from 2004. That number is consistent with the past 5 years of growth online. Note, however, that online purchases are a mere 7.6% of total retail sales.
Also, Travel spending was up 19% to $974 million — reflecting in large part increased energy costs for airlines and autos.
Note that these are actual sales receipts, and not opinion or
expectations of spending. Its is therefore a significant data point.
UPDATE November 29, 2005 10:49am
Here is the Visa data release