Executive Briefings

Expect Many Consumers to Use Debit Cards or Cash This Holiday Season, Not Credit Cards

To ensure they only spend within their budget, more Americans will use their debit cards or cash for their holiday purchases, while the use of credit cards is expected to decrease. According to NRF's 2010 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions survey, conducted by BIGresearch, more than four out of 10 (43.0 percent) holiday shoppers will rely on debit cards as a primary form of payment, a 20-percent increase from 2005's 34.3 percent. Slightly more than a quarter (27.6 percent) of shoppers will charge their gifts - the lowest since 2002's 26.8 percent - and 25.7 percent will use cash, up from 24.9 percent last year.

"Many families may choose to leave credit cards at home as they shop this year, making sure to only purchase what's on their list and within their budget," said NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay. "A variety of promotions, ranging from free shipping to one-day sales, will make it easier for shoppers to afford the perfect gift for their loved ones this holiday season."

Early Black Friday sales and special holiday offers seem to have already made an impact on shoppers this year with 10.5 percent of consumers saying they've completed at least half of their shopping, compared to 9.2 percent at this time last year. That said, slightly more than half of Americans (51.1 percent) have yet to begin their shopping.

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To ensure they only spend within their budget, more Americans will use their debit cards or cash for their holiday purchases, while the use of credit cards is expected to decrease. According to NRF's 2010 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions survey, conducted by BIGresearch, more than four out of 10 (43.0 percent) holiday shoppers will rely on debit cards as a primary form of payment, a 20-percent increase from 2005's 34.3 percent. Slightly more than a quarter (27.6 percent) of shoppers will charge their gifts - the lowest since 2002's 26.8 percent - and 25.7 percent will use cash, up from 24.9 percent last year.

"Many families may choose to leave credit cards at home as they shop this year, making sure to only purchase what's on their list and within their budget," said NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay. "A variety of promotions, ranging from free shipping to one-day sales, will make it easier for shoppers to afford the perfect gift for their loved ones this holiday season."

Early Black Friday sales and special holiday offers seem to have already made an impact on shoppers this year with 10.5 percent of consumers saying they've completed at least half of their shopping, compared to 9.2 percent at this time last year. That said, slightly more than half of Americans (51.1 percent) have yet to begin their shopping.

Read Full Article