Order Form

    This individual Report Declining Credit Card Growth 2008: A (Leaking) Glass Half Full is available for purchase. This Report is available to members of Mercator Advisory Group’s Credit Advisory Service. Please be advised that this Report is normally part of a research and advisory service that provides ongoing support throughout the year. As such, this Report contains significant depth of content that is selected for its strategic importance to our members. (For a description of these services, see our Advisory Services section).

    While the Report represents significant analyst time invested, there is no means of our ascertaining if it will fully meet your specific intended purposes. Typically, these Reports form the basis for future discussions with our clients where we are able to fine-tune additional information that we have gathered in the construction of the series of Reports (or locate new information rapidly due to our exclusive focus on gathering information in the payments industry) for specific member needs.

    Unfortunately, in fairness to our paying members, we are not able to offer this level of support for a single Report purchase. We will, however, credit any Research Document purchase against the future purchase price of the service should you become a member within 30 days of purchasing the document.

    The price for individual Report purchases is $2950 per document. 


    Use the form below to request this individual Report purchase or

    Click here for a fax-back order form




Declining Credit Card Growth 2008: A (Leaking) Glass Half Full

Boston, MA
November 2008

Declining Credit Card Growth 2008: A (Leaking) Glass Half Full


This report provides a state-of-the-industry commentary based on the critical economic events unfolding in 2008. Mercator's last review of this topic in 2006 characterized the credit card environment as "A Glass Half Full", thanks to an array of growth opportunities still available to issuers, as well as generally stable economic conditions. This report updates broad industry indicators and discusses potential outcomes within today's tumultuous economic environment. Topics explored include:

  • Credit card issuers remained profitable through 2007, but card receivables and volume growth continued their general slowing.
  • Card receivables growth has continued even into Q3/08, although a flattening of growth is apparent.
  • Q4/08 could be an inflection point in consumer card borrowing; the U.K. offers one example where consumers led the decline.
  • Issuers are deploying their recessionary credit management tools. The big unknown is how issuers will deal with a new external challenge: the loan funding crunch.
  • Two extreme scenarios are suggested for 2009: one where the Fed's TALF facility helps issuers maintain funding, and an alternative where a perfect storm of converging events re-shapes the card industry.

Ken Paterson, Director of Mercator Advisory Group's Credit Advisory Service and the author of this report, comments, "Some of the most threatening possibilities for the credit card industry reflect potentialities it has never before experienced. So on one hand, the credit card industry has proven time and again that it can manage risk - especially the consumer variety - and live to grow another day. On the other hand, risks external to the business are posing new threats that are only beginning to register."

One of the 14 Figures included in this report

This report contains 27 pages and 14 exhibits.

Other recent reports from the Mercator Credit Advisory Service:

Risk Management in the Corporate Credit Card Market: A Problem Waiting To Be Solved?
Fraud to the Left of Me, Risk to the Right
Credit Card Rewards Programs 2008: Trends, Challenges, and the Demand of Innovation
Credit Card Issuer Fraud Management: From Technology Inside To People Inside
Merchant Acquiring in the United States 2008: Birth of the Perfect Storm?
Members of Mercator Advisory Group have access to this report as well as the upcoming research for the year ahead, presentations, analyst access and other membership benefits.

Please visit us online at

For more information call Mercator Advisory Group's main line: 781-419-1700 or send email to