Mintel survey: Credit card use dropping

Debit cards are trumping credit cards in light of the recession, while more than a fifth of Americans (22%) are leaving both in the wallet, according to a new consumer survey from market research firm Mintel Comperemedia.

An overall 83% say the economy has prompted them to change their spending habits. Nearly half (43%) of those surveyed say they are relying more on their debit cards and using credit cards less because of the recession.

“The recession has truly jolted American spending, causing people to cut back on purchases and conduct their finances more conservatively,” said Stephen Clifford, Mintel VP of financial services, in a statement.

The online survey on debit/credit use queried 1,594 adults aged 18 and over.

Mintel also reported that credit card offers sent to Americans have dropped. Solicitations were cut in half in the first quarter of 2009, resulting in a 49% drop in mail volume over the previous quarter. Mintel said it estimates US card issuers sent fewer than 500 million offers in the first quarter, the lowest quarterly total since 2000.

At the same time, the number of debit card mail offers nearly doubled from the fourth quarter 2008 to first quarter 2009, according to Mintel.

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