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Festive credit card spending falls again

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by Kay Mitchell

Christmas credit card spending was down again for the second consecutive year, according to payments association, APACS.

APACS reported that while 2007 Christmas credit spending rose 4% on the previous year, this growth was driven by debit card spending, which increased by 6.8%.

Credit card spending fell from £11.4 billion in December 2006 to £11.3 billion in December 2007.

Overall spending on plastic cards accounted for 64% of total retail sales. There were 690 million plastic card transactions in December 2007, only 3.2% more than during December 2006. This equated to 263 transactions per second throughout the month, compared with 250 in December 2006.

Sandra Quinn of APACS said this trend highlights what we have been seeing over the last few years with people increasingly opting to use their debit card rather than credit card reflecting that people are thinking more carefully about spending what they can afford.

According to the British Retail Consortium, pre-Christmas 2007 was the worst December on the UK High Street since 2004, however, some retailers reported strong trading.

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News posted: February 8, 2008

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