With job creation showing signs of accelerating at the beginning of 2012, there is a renewed sense that business expansion will once again breathe life into the U.S. economy. And, with speculation that international economies may experience slower growth or even mild recession, now is the time for card issuers and marketers to double-down on the $730 billion U.S. commercial and small business card market.
While the need by many issuers to be somewhat risk averse may remain, small business card issuers and marketers that find a balance between risk management and aggressive promotion will be richly rewarded once the U.S. economy is expanding at full speed. At the same time, an extraordinary opportunity exists for commercial card issuers, particularly for purchasing cards, to capture the $21 trillion automated clearing house (ACH) universe of commercial electronic payments.
Several trends will be at the forefront over the next few years as commercial card issuers and marketers jockey for position in an increasingly competitive landscape. Analytical tools for the card issuers and the card program managers will become more robust and flexible as risk management and fraud detection become increasingly important.
The growing interest in mobile payments and technology in the consumer space is expected to find its footing commercially as well. The $400 billion U.S. small business card market will continue to walk that fine line between consumer and commercial with the potential for additional regulatory cardholder protections. Moreover, commercial cards will benefit from increased penetration by companies seeking to further reduce costs.
Commercial Payment Cards: The U.S. and Global Markets and Trends, 7th Edition presents data on and analysis of the Global and U.S. market for commercial payment cards and the U.S. market for commercial electronic payments. The report presents the size and growth of the market and related key metrics within the broader payment card arena. Included are discussions of the various card associations or networks, commercial payment card types, trends and factors affecting their growth, and a focused analysis of commercial card consumer demographics and preferences. In addition, major card brands and issuers are profiled with recent activity.
All new for this report edition is a look at the estimated $21 trillion U.S. commercial ACH market. In addition, card volume data are presented by product category (small business, commercial) and by region (Global, U.S., International). Also new is commercial card volume product segmentation (corporate, fleet, purchasing, and prepaid) for the United States.
Report data were obtained from various public and syndicated data sources, trade associations and publications, business journals, company literature, investment reports, and industry interviews. In most cases, the market data span the 2007–2011 period (2011 is estimated) with forecasts for 2012–2016. The key market statistic for commercial payment cards is expressed in terms of total purchase volume. The figures are primarily “dollar volume” figures published by the major associations, which consist predominantly of purchase volume (transactions for goods and services), but also include some cash volume (e.g. balance transfers, cash advances), particularly for small business cards. Packaged Facts' reasoning is that the vast majority of all “dollar volume” in the commercial payment space consists mostly of purchase volume, and therefore is more comparable to purchase volume within the overall payment card market. Figures from Visa and Discover are purchase volume only unless otherwise indicated, while American Express and MasterCard figures are “billed business” and “gross dollar volume,” respectively.
Volume figures were obtained primarily from associations (e.g., Visa, MasterCard) and issuer (e.g. American Express, various major banks) SEC filings, annual and quarterly reports, supplemental operational publications, and press releases. In some cases, dollar volume figures as well as other statistics were derived from other published metrics.
While the standard metric for commercial electronic payment is number of transactions, Packaged Facts provides estimates of dollar volume to show the value of the total U.S. commercial payment market. Data for electronic payments were taken from published statistics and press releases at the electronic payments association, NACHA.org.
Public data sources include the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the U.S. Census Bureau, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the World Bank. Syndicated data by Experian Simmons was used by Packaged Facts to analyze consumer behavior and demographics. The data comes from the Spring 2011 adult consumer survey, which is based on over 20,000 respondents age 18 or over.
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