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Who Buys Source

A study by Javelin Strategy & Research showed that the percentage of U.S. adult consumers with credit cards dropped from 74% in 2010 to 67% in 2011, while the percentage with debit cards declined from 78% to 66%.

Javelin Strategy & Research, 2012

According to credit reporting agency TransUnion, the number of new credit cards issued to consumers in 2011 rose by more than 20% when compared to 2010. And 24.2% of those cards went to people with below-prime credit scores.

The Associated Press, 2012

Research by credit rating bureau TransUnion determined that 54% of credit cards were issued to consumers with less than perfect credit in the third quarter of 2011, up from 50% the previous year.

Boston Globe, 2012

Profiling adults 18+ who own any brand of bank credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express), along with those consumers whose credit card expenditures total $450+ per month:

GfK MRI, 2011

Of those adults 18+ who use any type of bank credit cards, 51.3% are women and 48.7% are men.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ who use any type of bank credit cards, by age group: 18-24, 9.9%; 25-34, 17.7%; 35-44, 18.5%; 45-54, 20.6%; 55-64, 16.3%; 65+, 17.0%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ who use any type of bank credit cards, by income bracket: $100,000+, 31.2%; $75-99,999, 16.5%; $60-74,999, 11.8%; $50-59,999, 8.5%; $40-49,999, 8.5%; $30-39,999, 8.5%; $20-29,999, 7.5%; under $20,000, 7.5%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ who use any type of bank credit cards, by race: White, 81.1%; Black, 7.7%; Other, 11.2%; Hispanic origin, 10.9%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ who use any type of bank credit cards, by region: Northeast, 19.1%; Midwest, 23.1%; South, 35.3%; West, 22.5%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ who own any type of bank credit cards, by marital status: Single, 22.1%; married, 60.6%; separated/widowed/divorced, 17.3%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Of those adults 18+ whose monthly credit card expenditures are $450+, 52.6% are men and 47.4% are women.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ whose monthly credit card spending is $450+, by age range: 18-24, 4.5%; 25-34, 15.5%; 35-44, 19.4%; 45-54, 22.3%; 55-64, 18.6%; 65+, 19.7%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ whose monthly credit card expenditures total $450+, by income level: $100,000+, 48.1%; $75-99,999, 19.2%; $60-74,999, 9.9%; $50-59,999, 6.9%; $40-49,999, 5.7%; $30-39,999, 4.6%; $20-29,999, 3.3%; under $20,000, 2.3%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ whose monthly credit card expenditures total $450+, by race: White, 85.4%; Black, 2.7%; Other, 11.9%; Hispanic origin, 8.5%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ whose monthly credit card spending totals $450+, by region: Northeast, 21.8%; Midwest, 22.2%; South, 32.8%; West, 23.2%.

GfK MRI, 2011

Adults 18+ whose monthly credit card expenditures are $450+, by marital status: Single, 14.6%; married, 71.9%; separated/widowed/divorced, 13.5%.

GfK MRI, 2011

When They Buy Source

An early 2012 survey of adult debit cardholders determined that the respondents used their primary debit card an average of 14.9 times per month, spending an average of $454 a month on these purchases.

Auriemma Consulting Group, Inc., 2012

Why They Buy Source

According to a 2012 survey by Capital One, earning more rewards for every dollar spent was the top reason card holders would be most likely to switch to another rewards credit card, instead of the option of large sign-up bonuses.

Capital One Financial, 2012

According to a 2012 Harris Interactive survey, primary reasons for using prepaid debit cards: They are convenient, 97%; they are safer than carrying cash, 78%; you are not able to overspend, or spend money you don't have, 72%; they enable you to better manage your money, 56%; money would be replaced if the card is stolen, 53%; no minimum balance requirement, 52%; they offer lower or fewer fees than other payment or banking options, 36%.

Harris Interactive, 2012

How They Buy Source

A 2012 Harris Interactive survey asked U.S. adults how they typically pay for everyday transactions such as groceries, gas, dining out, paying bills, online shopping, etc. (more than one answer possible): Cash, 89%; debit card/prepaid debit card, 68%; checks, 55%; credit card, 53%; some other form of payment, 10%.

Harris Interactive, 2012

As of early-May, 2011, the national average annual percentage rate (APR) on new credit card offers was 14.91%, down from 14.99% six months earlier.

CreditCards.com, 2012

According to figures compiled by credit reporting agency TransUnion, cardholders had an average of $4,962 in credit card debt in the first quarter of 2012, up 6.1% from the first quarter of 2011.

The Associated Press, 2012

Based on a survey of 100 widely-held credit cards from large issuers, 69% of the cards charged a penalty rate in 2012, down from 91% in 2010. However, of those cards that kept a penalty rate, the average rate went from 27.9% in 2010 to 28.6% in 2012.

CreditCards.com, 2012

Fees accounted for 52.7% of credit card companies' income in 2011, with interest making up the remaining 47.3%.

Payments Source, 2012

A study by Javelin Strategy & Research indicated that approximately 13% of U.S. adults used prepaid cards in 2011, compared to 11% in 2010.

Javelin Strategy & Research, 2012

What They Buy Source

According to a 2012 survey by Capital One, the number one reward option for credit card holders is cash (45%), followed by gift cards (32%) and domestic airline tickets (28%).

Capital One Financial, 2012

For the first time since 2007, combined American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa consumer and commercial credit, debit and prepaid cards generated a double-digit increase in spending at merchants. The combined cards accounted for $3.595 trillion in purchase volume in 2011, up 10.4% from 2010.

The Nilson Report, 2012

Based on a 2012 survey by Auriemma Consulting Group, issuers of rewards credit cards that respondents said they used most often: JPMorgan Chase, 27%; Bank of America, 14%; Discover Financial Services, 14%; American Express, 13%; Citibank, 7%; Capital One, 6%; Wells Fargo, 4%; Barclaycard, 3%. 

Auriemma Consulting Group, Inc., 2012

Based on a 2012 survey of 400 credit card holders by Auriemma Consulting Group, types of rewards cards carried most often: Cash-based, 76% (up from 70% in 2011); retail co-branded, 36% (up from 17% in 2011); airlines frequent-flier cards, 23% (down from 28% in 2011); gasoline-rewards cards, 21% (up from 15%). 

Auriemma Consulting Group, Inc., 2012

An early-May survey of 100 credit card offers, conducted by CreditCards.com, showed that only 26 had an annual fee, ranging in size from $19 to $495. The average annual fee amount is appoximately $80. Most cards that come with an annual fee are either secured cards or travel rewards credit cards.

CreditCards.com, 2012

According to an early-May survey of 100 credit card offers, conducted by CreditCards.com, 22 of the cards featured a 0% promotional APR for 12 months or more; 21 of these cards didn't carry an annual fee. Eight of the cards advertised a 0% APR for 15 months or longer; none of these cards had an annual fee. Twenty-two of the cards offered a 0% balance transfer deal for 12 months or more; just one carried an annual fee. Eleven of the cards featured a 0% balance transfer offer for 15 months or more; 10 didn't have an annual fee.

CreditCards.com, 2012

A study by Mintel showed that "plain-vanilla" cards (those that don't have an annual fee or rewards) accounted for 30% of the offers mailed out by credit card companies in the fourth quarter of 2011, up from 13% in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Bankrate.com, 2012

Where They Buy Source

Market share of the purchase volume total for the major credit card companies in 2011: Visa, 43.3%; American Express, 26.3%; MasterCard, 24.8%; Discover, 5.6%.

The Nilson Report, 2012

Number of credit cards in circulation among the four major credit card companies in 2011 (totals in millions), with change from the previous year in parentheses: Visa, 234.1 (-2.5%); MasterCard, 175.7 (+2.9%); Discover, 58.7 (+5.9%);  American Express, 50.6 (+3.5%).

The Nilson Report, 2012

Issuers that sent out the most credit card solicitations through the mail in 2011 (totals in millions): 1. Citibank, 381.6; 2. Chase, 304.5; 3. American Express, 94.1; 4. Capital One, 91.3; 5. Discover, 88.4; 6. Bank of America, 74.1. In all, the six biggest card issuers were responsible for just over a billion credit card offers in 2011 -- roughly a quarter of the total.

Synovate, 2012

As of year-end 2011, companies with the largest number of credit cards issued: 1. Citigroup Inc., 119,959,663; 2. JPMorgan Chase & Co., 96,250,395; 3. Bank of America Corp., 92,561,785; 4. American Express, 49,526,257; 5. Capital One Financial Corp., 46,338,597; 6. Discover Financial Services, 37,783,256; 7. HSBC North America Holdings, 24,448,642; 8. USAA, 22,699,671; 9. Wells Fargo & Co., 18,115,311; 10. GE Capital Retail Bank, 16,572,605.

Payments Source, 2012

Business Trends Source

Purchase volume totals for the major credit card companies in 2011, with change from 2010 in parentheses (totals in billions): Visa, $888.0 (+9.7%); American Express, $540.1 (+13.4%); MasterCard, $508.0 (+6.1%); Discover, $114.2 (+7.7%).

The Nilson Report, 2012

The number of credit card solicitations sent through the mail in 2011 totaled an estimated 4 billion, up from just under 3 billion in 2010 and 1.25 billion in 2009, according to research by Synovate. The record for credit card offers was set in 2005, when approximately 6 billion were mailed out.

Boston Globe, 2012

According to a study by market research firm Synovate, on average, consumers respond to only 4 in 1,000 of mailed credit card offers.

Boston Globe, 2012

The 40.61 billion purchase transactions on Visa and MasterCard brand debit and prepaid cards accounted for 64.8% of all general purpose card purchases at merchants in 2011, up from 29.9% in 2000. In 2011, debit card purchase transactions increased by 3.73 billion, compared to an increase of 1.75 billion for credit card transactions. 

The Nilson Report, 2012

The number of credit card inquiries (credit checks by banks) in the last six months of 2011 rose 2.7% -- up 16.1% from the first quarter of 2010, when it hit a record low.

CreditCards.com, 2012

Credit card outstandings for all Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover general purpose card accounts totaled $713.3 billion in 2011, up 0.3% from 2010.

The Nilson Report, 2012

In the fourth quarter of 2011, 3.17% of all credit card accounts in the U.S. were 30 days past due or more, down from 3.25% in the fourth quarter of 2010.

American Bankers Association, 2012

A 2012 survey by Harris Interactive revealed that 39% of Americans carry credit card debt from month to month -- a proportion that has remained largely unchanged since 2010 (41% in 2010, 40% in 2011). Compared to 2011, however, U.S. adults are now more likely to have applied (15% in 2012 vs. 10% in 2011), and been rejected (7% in 2012 vs. 4% in 2011) for a new credit card.

Harris Interactive, 2012

A 2012 survey by Auriemma Consulting Group found that 62% of the study respondents owned a rewards credit card, up from 56% who said so a year earlier.

Auriemma Consulting Group, Inc., 2012

In 2011, American Express overtook MasterCard to claim second place among credit brands the U.S., based on spending at merchants. This marked the first time since the 1960s, when MasterCard was known as MasterCharge, that American Express had experienced more purchase volume in a single year.

Business Wire, 2012

Based on a 2012 Harris Interactive survey, in the past 12 months, 15% of U.S. adults, or more than 35 million Americans, have used a prepaid debit card. Thirteen percent, or about 30.5 million Americans, typically use such cards to pay for everyday transactions such as groceries, gas, dining out, paying bills and shopping online.

Harris Interactive, 2012

A survey by Capital One found that only 42% of rewards card holders even bothered to redeem their rewards in the fourth quarter of 2011.

Capital One Financial, 2012

A 2012 Harris Interactive survey indicated that 13% of adults had cancelled a credit card in the past year, while 11% were late in making a credit card payment, 8% had missed a credit card payment, 5% had transferred a balance from one card to another, and 3% had obtained a cash advance from their credit card company.

Harris Interactive, 2012

A 2012 survey of more than 28,000 men and women, conducted by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, found that women were paying half a percentage point more in credit card interest rates than men. One possible explanation, according to the survey, is that women may be more inclined to acquire retail credit cards, which tend to carry higher interest rates.

CreditCards.com, 2012

According to a 2012 survey of more than 28,000 men and women, conducted by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, women were more likely to exhibit negative credit card behaviors than men (including carrying a balance on their credit cards, paying only the minimum monthly payment and being charged late fees).

CreditCards.com, 2012

Misc Source

Through the first quarter of 2012, Tennessee ranked as the state with the highest per capita rate of bankruptcies -- 7.19 filings per 1,000 residents -- based on a study by Epiq Systems Inc. Rounding out the top 10 were Nevada (7.00), Georgia (6.65), Utah (5.87), Alabama (5.87), Michigan (5.72), Illinois (5.58), California (5.49), Indiana (5.47) and Delaware (5.09).

CreditCards.com, 2012