First Data: Spending Gains Momentum in April; Prepaid Dollar Volume Rises 6.9 Percent (May 13, 3014)
Same-store spending on credit, debit, EBT, closed-loop prepaid cards and checks, gained 4.1 percent in April over last year, according to First Data Corp.’s latest SpendTrend data. Prepaid spending showed the highest dollar-volume increase at 6.9 percent compared with credit (4.3 percent) and signature and PIN debit (4.5 and 4.1, respectively). Check volume fell 2.7 percent.
The processor, which releases monthly results from POS transactions at nearly 4 million merchant locations it services, said warmer weather, the Easter holiday and tax refunds boosted April spending over March’s 3.1 percent increase. Transaction growth of 3.5 percent also was up compared to March’s 2.7 percent growth. Higher gas prices, an uptick in job creation and a lift in consumer confidence also supported the increase.
Spending at clothing and accessories stores and health and personal care stores showed positive gains of 1.2 and 0.2 percent, respectively, compared with March, which saw declines of 5.0 and 2.4 percent. Dollar volume growth of 3.6 percent at building material and supply stores slowed slightly from March’s growth of 4.3 percent but remained healthy as higher temperatures encouraged spending on garden, home construction and outdoor items.
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