SpendTrend report shows slowed card spending growth

Atlanta A report released Tuesday by First Data Corp. found that October’s same-store dollar volume growth in spending via credit, signature debit, PIN debit and EBT cards was 6.7% and transaction growth was 8.6%.

According to the First Data SpendTrend analysis for the full month of October 2010 compared with October 2009, consumers remained concerned about the economy and high levels of unemployment. According to First Data, October 2009 marked the beginning of the recovery last year. In October 2010, the comparisons to 2009 became more difficult.

Overall average tickets were down -1.7%, representing the fifth consecutive month of negative average ticket growth and the lowest since November 2009. In October, the absolute average ticket value was lower compared with the prior month. Most major merchant categories contributed to the overall decline.

Transaction growth across all major payment types slowed from September as consumers were focused on the elections. October marked the third month in a row of slower year-over-year PIN debit transaction growth. One possible factor that contributed to the slower growth of PIN debit, according to the report, was the implementation of Regulation E, which requires banks to decline debit transactions at the point-of-sale for customers who have not opted in for overdraft protection.