PSCU Credit Unions Experience Strong Growth in Card-Based Spend to Kick-Off the 2018 Holiday Season

By Glynn Frechette, Senior Vice President, Advisors Plus

PSCU credit unions have reason to feel jolly this season. We are pleased to report that data analyzed from our Owner credit unions indicate strong growth in card-based spend, as a kickoff to the 2018 holiday shopping season. As part of our annual card-spend analysis, using data from our Enterprise Data Warehouse of real-time transactions, we found that PSCU credit unions outperformed non-PSCU credit unions; this was due largely in part to strategic guidance provided by PSCU’s Advisors Plus and account management teams.

The consensus of estimates amongst various media outlets was that 2018 growth was going to average 4-6%. PSCU credit unions performed very favorably to date – essentially doubling the full-season estimates, as evidenced below:

  • We observed overall card-spend growth of 9.70% over 2017 for the 5-day period beginning with Thanksgiving and concluding with Cyber Monday.
    • Over that time, credit cards experienced growth of 8.28% and debit realized a 10.43% increase.
  • Card-spend breakdown within the 5-day period:
    • Thanksgiving: Credit 7.14%, Debit 8.68% – Total 8.30%
    • Black Friday: Credit 7.46%, Debit 11.07% – Total 9.64%
    • Cyber Monday: Credit 7.71%, Debit 11.69% – Total 10.19%
    • Weekend Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday: Credit 9.59%, Debit 10.25% – Total 10.03%
  • 16.85% of total November 2018 spend occurred during the 5-day period, down from 16.95% in the same period in 2017. This makes sense, given that retailers have generally begun their sales and associated advertising earlier in the month (e.g. “Get your Black Friday door-buster deals now, before Black Friday!”)

Stay tuned for our January 2019 recap, which will speak to the dynamics of November and December card spend for PSCU credit unions. As we have seen momentum going into this holiday season, we can expect healthy growth to be reported in our next update.