Study: Rewards cards have taken over the market

Rewards cards increasingly dominate the credit card market, making up more than half the new accounts Americans have opened since 2012, a study by the American Bankers Association shows.

Transactions on reward cards rose almost 50 percent from the first quarter in 2007 to the same period in 2014, climbing from $580 billion to $1.15 trillion Meanwhile, spending on nonrewards cards was down 32 percent, from $672 billion to $460 billion.

Rewards cards are no longer reserved for those with the best credit scores, either. Of all new cards going to consumers with credit scores lower than 660 in 2014, almost two-thirds were rewards cards, an increase from 37 percent in the first quarter of 2011, the study found.

The study, released Sept. 30, 2014, is based on research performed by Argus Information & Advisory Services LLC, and looks at figures from the first quarter of 2007 to the first quarter of 2014.


See related: Fewer Americans are delinquent on their bank cards, More infographics

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Updated: 01-23-2019