The quantum of spends on credit cards has almost reached pre-Covid19 levels and there has been a significant increase in the number of credit cards, as per the data of leading private sector banks.

``We are certainly seeing consumption coming up as Covid-19 normalises, almost fully. So we are now seeing spends coming up, revolving slowly,’‘ Sandeep Bakhshi -- Managing Director and CEO, ICICI Bank said while responding to a query at the analyst call.

ICICI Bank

For ICICI Bank, the value of credit card spends grew by 77 per cent year-on-year in fourth quarter of 2022 driven by higher activation rate through digital onboarding of customers, including Amazon Pay credit cards, automated and effective portfolio management helping growth in spends among existing card customers and diversification through commercial cards.

Axis Bank

Axis Bank acquired 1.1 million credit cards in the fourth quater of FY22, highest ever for any quarter. ``On credit cards, we are seeing huge customer interest in our proposition. We have grown 26 per cent over last year and we issued around 2.7 million cards during FY 22,’‘ Amitabh Chaudhry, MD & CEO, Axis Bank said. 

HDFC Bank

The experience of HDFC Bank with credit cards also shows an upward trend. The bank had 16.5 million cards as of March 2022, and during the quarter It had issued 8.2 lakh cards, further it has issued 21.8 lakh cards since lifting of the embargo (by RBI) in the seven months of this financial year. 

HDFC Bank’s card spends had grown by 28 per cent this year over prior year. The bank has 3 million acceptance points as of March with a year-on-year growth of 37 per cent Acquiring business volumes including UPI and direct pay grew 30 per cent over prior year.

According to an economist working with a major private bank, the relief from Covid19 and return of economic activity and job-security along with complete reliance of good Cibil score are driving growth in credit cards.

As per Reserve Bank of India (RBI) data, total number of outstanding credit cards as on February, 2022  was at 7,17,07,614.

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