The Central Bank of Ireland has released Ireland’s Credit and Debit Card Statistics for Q2 2017. Here is an overview of the main findings.

  • Debit card Point of Sale (PoS) transactions, at €2.9 billion in June 2017, were 16 per cent higher than the same month in 2016. Credit card PoS spending was 5 per cent higher than in the same period in 2016 (Chart 1).
  • Debit card e-commerce was €873 million in June compared to €857 million in March. The June value is 25 per cent higher than one year earlier. E-commerce now accounts for 30 per cent of debit card PoS transactions and 44 per cent of credit card purchases.
  • Debit card PoS spending was more than three times the value of credit card spending in June. There were increases across all categories of spending, but services and social spending had the highest increases over the year, at 20 per cent and 23 per cent respectively.
  • Within services, Professional Services have increased by 27 per cent since June 2016. Within social, a similar trend is evident for Restaurants/Dining, which recorded a 28 per cent increase.
  • Just over 73 per cent of all personal credit card expenditure in June 2017 was split between the retail (38 per cent) and services (35 per cent) sectors (Chart 3). In comparison, debit card expenditure in the retail and services sectors accounted for 49 per cent and 22 per cent of all new debit card PoS transactions, respectively.
  • Total debit card expenditure outside Ireland averaged €361 million in the 3 months to end-June (Chart 4). Credit or debit card expenditure outside Ireland (when the physical card is present) provides an indication of expenditure abroad by Irish tourists. A large seasonal effect can be seen in the data, particularly for debit cards, with higher expenditures outside Ireland recorded in the summer months than in the winter months. Debit card expenditure abroad during Q2 2017 amounted to €1.1 billion, an increase of 17 per cent on the Q2 2016 figure. Credit card expenditure outside Ireland saw a 5 per cent increase in Q2 2017 compared with the Q2 2016 figure. The total value of debit card expenditure outside Ireland (including ATM transactions) is 2.6 times the value of equivalent credit card expenditure. This compares with a ratio of just 1.3 recorded in January 2015.
  • Over €1.1 billion of outstanding credit card balances included an accrued interest component at end-June 2017. Chart 5 provides a breakdown of interest-bearing balances as a percentage of credit card limits. This shows that 7 per cent of cards have exceeded their credit limit, while 36 per cent had balances between 76 and 100 per cent of their credit limit. This represents a 3 per cent and 1 per cent respective decrease in these categories from the amounts recorded when the series began in January 2015.

Click here to view the full report