Nilson Report

Issue 1188 | Dec 2020

FEATURED COMPANIES

Companies featured in this issue include:

U.S. Consumer Payment Systems–Market Shares of Transactions in 2019

Personal Consumption Expenditures in the U.S.

Consumer Payment Systems in the U.S

Largest Credit Card Issuers Worldwide–Ranked by Purchase Volume in 2019

Card Manufacturers 2019–Part 2

U.S. General Purpose Card Brands–3Q 2020 and change vs. 3Q 2019

Investments & Acquisitions–November 2020

U.S. General Purpose Cards Jan 1-Sep. 30, 2020

Purchases of goods and services (purchase volume) generated by Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover credit cards issued in the U.S. totaled $2.610 trillion in the first three quarters of 2020, a decline of 10.4%.

1. Visa, Credit
$1,403.44 billion purchase volume, -8.6%
2. Mastercard, Credit
$605.21 billion purchase volume, -9.0%
3. American Express, Credit
$499.45 billion purchase volume, -17.7%
4. Discover, Credit
$101.84 billion purchase volume, -4.8%

Full access to the General Purpose Cards—January 1-September 30, 2020 results in the United States is available when you subscribe to the Nilson Report.

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POSTED DEC 21, 2020 | PRINT

U.S. General Purpose Card Brands through 3Q 2020

Please note: Only subscribers can access the charts included with this article.

Purchase volume generated by credit, debit and prepaid cards issued in the United States with Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover brands for the first nine months of 2020 was a combined $4.904 trillion, down $31.59 billion or 0.6% versus the first nine months of 2019. 

The Covid-19 pandemic was responsible for a decline in credit card spending of $303.53 billion (down 10.4%) to $2.610 trillion for the first three quarters of 2020. However, debit card spending increased $271.94 billion (up 13.4%) to $2.294 trillion. Debit cards accounted for 46.78% of purchase volume for the first nine months of 2020, up from 40.98% for the same period of 2019.

Visa debit card purchase volume increased by $190.59 billion (up 13.3%), while Mastercard debit card purchase volume increased by $81.44 billion (up 13.9%). Discover credit card purchase volume fell $5.15 billion (down 4.8%), Mastercard credit card purchase volume fell $59.79 billion (down 9.0%), American Express credit card purchase volume fell $107.21 billion (down 17.7%) and Visa credit card purchase volume fell $131.38 billion (down 8.6%).

Cash advances accounted for 2.21% of total credit card volume, a drop from 2.87%. Cash withdrawals equaled 20.17% of total debit card volume, down from 21.12%.

When measuring only credit card purchase volume. Visa’s share increased to 53.77% from 52.68%. Mastercard’s share grew to 23.19% from 22.82% and Discover’s share increased to 3.90% from 3.67%. American Express’s share declined to 19.14% from 20.82%. Travel and entertainment (T&E) volume on American Express cards dropped 56% versus the first nine months of 2019, while its non-T&E volume was down 3%.

There were 80.63 billion transactions for purchases of goods and services initiated by Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover credit, debit and prepaid cards from January 1 through September 30, 2020. This was a decline of 2.43 billion (down 2.9%) versus the first nine months of 2019.

Mastercard and Visa brand debit cards accounted for 63.36% of combined debit and credit card purchase transactions, up from 60.66% the prior year. Credit cards accounted for the remaining 36.64% of purchase transactions, down from 39.34% for the same period in 2019. 

Of combined credit and debit purchase transactions for all brands, Visa debit cards accounted for 44.51%, up from 42.94%. Credit cards with the Visa brand accounted for 20.72% of all purchase transactions, a decline from 22.51%. Debit cards with the Mastercard brand generated 18.85% of combined purchase transactions, up from 17.72% in 2019. Mastercard brand credit cards generated 8.58%, down from 9.02%. American Express cards accounted for 5.00% of all purchase transactions, a drop from 5.42%. Discover brand cards had a 2.34% share, down from 2.39%.

The average purchase amount of a debit card transaction was $44.91, up 11.9% from $40.14. The average purchase amount of a credit card transaction was $88.34, down from $89.16.

Prior issues: 1181, 1175, 1169, 1165, 1161, 1138, 1115, 1092, 1069, 1046, 1023



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