Credit, debit, and prepaid general purpose and private label cards issued in the United States generated $5.936 trillion in payments for goods and services in 2016.
Card fees, which include processing fees and interchange fees, paid by US merchants to handle all card payments, were $88.39 billion, according to The Nilson Report.
“When you add up all of the spending and divide by the fees merchants pay, the average is $1.49 for every $100 in card sales,” commented David Robertson, Publisher of The Nilson Report.
Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, and private label (store, gasoline, medical, etc.) credit cards accounted for a combined $3.347 trillion in purchase volume. This amounted to 56.38% of all card spending including debit and prepaid. Credit cards accounted for $69.79 billion in processing fees, equal to 78.96% of total processing fees paid by merchants.
Visa, Mastercard, and PIN-based EFT system debit card payments generated $2.589 trillion in 2016 and accounted for 43.62% of all spending for goods and services including credit cards. Debit cards generated $18.60 billion or 21.04% of the total processing fees paid.
The weighted average of processing fees paid as a percentage of purchase volume from all credit, debit, and prepaid general purpose and private label cards was 1.49% in 2016.