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Report: Credit card usage increased in 2011

April 30, 2012

Credit card payments rose during 2011 from the previous year, according to the recently released Nilson Report.

Credit card payments rose during 2011 from the previous year, according to the recently released Nilson Report.

The Global Credit Card Brands study revealed that payments made with, MasterCard, American Express, Diners Club, JCB, UnionPay and Visa totaled $135.33 billion last year, 12.1 percent higher than in 2010. The total number of debit, prepaid and credit cards in use also made gains, with 6.54 billion in circulation, 718.7 million more than the previous year. The firm with the biggest gains was UnionPay, which experienced a 22.1 percent increase in total cards, while  MasterCard saw an 8.9 percent increase.

Those who helped conduct the study said that more people were using credit and debit cards to pay for items than cash.

“These results reflect a continuation of the worldwide movement from cash and checks to payment cards, both debit and credit,” said David Robertson, publisher of The Nilson Report.

One of the reasons card payments could be gaining popularity is due to the new mobile credit card processing capabilities being developed. PayPal recently came out with its “Here” smartphone credit card reader, which gives users a new way to pay for items.

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