Credit cards are a way of life, especially in the United States, although other countries are equally heavy credit users as we are. Here are some interesting facts about credit cards from when they started transforming the payment industry in 1950, only 69 years ago!
- It costs a credit card company about $80 to acquire a new customer, factoring in the marketing and processing fees, factoring in TV and radio commercials, telemarketing, print ads and direct mail.
- The word Visa is itself an acronym that stands for Visa International Service Association, founded in 1958, headquartered in Foster City, California
- Merchants accepting credit cards spend $7 billion each year in credit card processing fees. Providing the ability to use credit cards to its customers generates approximately 15% higher sales from consumers who prefer to carry plastic for purchases rather than cash or checks.
- Across the United States, people in Alaska generally carry the most credit card debt, averaging $13,000; Ohioans have the least debt, about $5,500.
- Averaging across the United States, a person’s or family’s average credit balance is just over $6,300 and Americans overall pay more than $100 billion in interest and fees each year.
- To you and I, a deadbeat is someone who doesn’t pay their bills on time. However, in the credit card industry, deadbeats are those careful spenders who pay off their credit balances each month. Financial institutions prefer financially irresponsible card users who aren’t paying off their balances each month, enabling the bank to charge them interest and generate profits. In fact, conscientious financial “deadbeats” cost banks money if they aren’t paying interest charges and qualify for reward programs and cash-back incentives