Detailed monthly data for January 2021 show that total card spending, including ATM withdrawals, decreased in both monthly and annual terms.
In annual terms, a decrease of 18% was recorded.
Compared to December 2020, total credit and debit card spending decreased by 34% in January to €5.1 billion. This reflects both the impact of the reintroduction of Level 5 restrictions in late December and seasonality trends – with spend generally declining in January but grocery spending remained strong.
Again, the hospitality sectors of restaurants and accommodation were the most heavily impacted sectors in January in month-on-month terms. These fell by 57% and 71% respectively compared to December.
The entertainment sector declined by 41%. Indeed, the only sector to experience an increase in month-on-month spending in January was the education sector.
Table 1: Debit Card PoS and Credit Card Sectoral Expenditure (€000s)
Jan 20 Dec 20 Jan 21 M-oM% change Y-oY%change
286,289 321,810 137,764 -57% -52%
Monthly spending in the services sector declined by 25% as spending in both the accommodation and travel sub-sectors remained low, reflecting the impact of restrictions. While the social sector somewhat bounced back in December 2020 (recording a 45% month-on-month increase), the reintroduction of Level 5 restrictions, as well as seasonal trends in January have resulted in an overall fall of 49% month-on-month.
In annual terms, the transport, accommodation and restaurants/dining sub-sectors continued to be the most heavily impacted, with spending in these sub-sectors 82%, 85% and 52% below their January 2020 spending levels.