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More people used credit cards

December 6, 2011

According to many merchant service industry experts, while the economic collapse of 2008 resulted in a drop of consumers using credit, in recent months the payment method is gaining popularity.

According to many merchant service industry experts, while the economic collapse of 2008 resulted in a drop of consumers using credit, in recent months the payment method is gaining popularity.

A study by First Data revealed that during the first quarter of 2011, credit card usage surged up 8.2 percent, followed by a 9 percent increase in the second quarter and a 10.6 percent in the third quarter compared to the same time last year.

On one of the retail sector’s busiest holiday events, Black Friday, the total number of transactions made through the plastic payment method rose 7.4 percent.

“Credit is back in favor,” said Silvio Tavares, senior vice president at First Data. “Consumers have spent the last couple of years de-leveraging and reducing credit card use, but during the past month -and since April [of this year] – they’ve been using their credit cards more and are starting to return to pre-recession buying habits.”

One rapidly growing merchant services trend has been near field communication. TechCrunch reports that MasterCard is planning to pour major funds into mFoundry, which provides NFC technology to many institutions.

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