Credit and debit card spending drops in April

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The total amount spent on debit and credit cards as well as ATM withdrawals fell 3% in April from the previous month, according to new figures from the Central Bank.

Total spending reached 7.6 billion euros during the month, down 229 million euros from March spending figures.

Compared to April last year, when public health restrictions limited in-person spending, total spending was up 23%, or 1.4 billion euros.

The figures show that ATM withdrawals continue to remain subdued compared to pre-pandemic levels and were 18% lower than February 2020 figures.

Total card spend outside Ireland increased by 15% or €48 million, compared to the previous month.

Compared to April 2021, this represents an increase of 212%, or 251 million euros.

According to the figures, retail spending fell 3% or 84 million euros last month compared to March.

Spending fell across all retail sectors on a monthly basis, except for clothing, which rose 9% or 25 million euros.

Compared to April last year, when public health restrictions were in place, total retail spending was up 5% or 150 million euros.

Spending on services recorded a strong year-on-year increase, up 69% or €628 million, mainly due to higher spending in the transport and accommodation sectors, which increased by 311% and 560%, respectively.

All service sectors recorded year-on-year increases, with the exception of utilities, which recorded a decline of 6% or €17 million.

Total social spending fell 2% in April compared to March.

However, compared to the previous year, the figures show that social expenditure has increased by 83%, or 337 million euros.

This was due to an increase in restaurant spending, which increased by 143% or €277 million, while entertainment spending increased by 39% or €70 million.

Total in-store spending reached 3.6 billion euros in April, unchanged from the previous month.

This represents an increase of 39% or 1 billion euros, compared to the same month last year.

Meanwhile, total online spending fell 7% from the previous month to 2.9 billion euros, but was up 10% from April last year.

The latest data from the Central Bank shows that total card spending in May was largely unchanged from April.

Compared to last May, spending increased by 21%.

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