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Credit card spending on the rise in the UK

74 per cent of all debit card transactions in the UK were made with contactless.

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Lensi Photography/Starling Bank.

Credit card spending and the number of transactions consumers are making continue to rise, according to new data from UK Finance.

In research covering both the monthly value and volume of transactions across debit and credit cards in the UK and of UK-issued cards worldwide, there was a consistent increase for 2022 versus 2021.

For UK cardholders, debit card transactions were up in November 2022 compared to the previous year by 8.1 per cent to 2.1 billion, while total spending was up 5.3 per cent to £66.6bn.

Similarly, credit card transactions were marginally up by 0.3 per cent to 355.1 million, with total spend was up 5.3 per cent to £19.6bn.

A reflection of the ongoing impact of the cost-of-living crisis on UK, outstanding balances on credit card accounts grew by 9.4 per cent over 12 months.

Card transactions made in the UK by both international and UK cardholders saw similar trends, with debit and credit card transactions increasing by 4.7 per cent to 2.1 billion and total spend up 3.7 per cent to £73.6bn.

The data also showed a significant increase in contactless payments, which accounted for 60 per cent of credit and 74 per cent of debit card transactions, up by 16.4 per cent and 13 per cent, respectively.

This increased adoption of contactless payments, along with a general post-lockdown increase in spending, saw the total value of contactless transactions across both debit and credit rise by a huge 29.4 per cent to £22.9bn from £17.7bn.

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