Industry News | June 11, 2014

Weather, Demand Increase May's Consumer Spending

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First Data Corporation released its First Data SpendTrend analysis for May 1, 2014 through May 30, 2014, compared to May 2, 2013 through May 31, 2013. SpendTrend tracks same-store point-of-sale data by credit, signature debit, PIN debit, EBT, closed-loop prepaid cards, and checks from nearly four million merchant locations serviced by First Data.

Spending growth of 4.2 percent, compared to April’s 4.1 percent, was driven by May’s warm weather, which specifically spurred spending on travel and home improvement. Hotel spending growth of 9.3 percent, a 12 month high, spiked in May vs. April’s 7 percent. Related dollar volume growth of 7.1 percent at Travel merchants was also the highest growth in over a year and was up considerably over April’s growth of 5.2 percent. Gas Station spending growth of 3.6 percent was higher compared to April’s growth of 3.3 percent and was another key supporting factor in overall growth as gas prices remained elevated versus last year.

Retail spending growth of 1.7 percent marked a slight uptick compared to April’s growth of 1.3 percent as warmer weather across most regions, with the exception of the Northeast, supported retail foot traffic. Overall retail spending growth in May marked the strongest growth in seven months, primarily driven by spending at Building Material & Supply Dealers (6.7 percent in May vs. 3.6 percent in April) and Furniture & Home Furnishings merchants (1.4 percent in May vs. -0.7 percent in April.)  

Average ticket growth of 1.2 percent in May gained steam against April’s 0.5 percent growth, driven by higher year-over-year gas prices, higher food prices, and an increase in some leisure-related categories. Retail average ticket growth of 0.0 percent was an improvement over April’s growth of -1.1 percent as many retailers returned to full price selling versus discounting used to boost foot traffic during and after the extended winter.

“A number of factors, including normalized weather, pent-up demand, falling unemployment, and rising home prices supported consumers’ willingness to spend in May,” says Krish Mantripragada, SVP, Information and Analytics Solutions, First Data. “Credit card spending growth continued to be strong and led all other payment types. The surge in spending growth at Hotel and Travel merchants, Building Material & Home Furnishing merchants, where credit is the primary payment tool, was a major driver supported by easing lending standards and payroll growth.”

May Dollar Volume Growth CHANGE

Credit

+4.9 percent

Signature Debit

+3.7 percent

PIN Debit

+4.2 percent

Check

-5.1 percent

Prepaid

+2.4 percent

 

Note:  All transactions are same-store growth. Processing more than 59 billion transactions globally in 2013, First Data has long been a data powerhouse with the ability to help its clients use transaction data to prevent fraud, identify spending patterns, and create loyalty programs.

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.