November a busy month for techies, gamblers and bookworms

Debit card spend for Cyber Monday and Black Friday up slightly on last year

Friday 4th December 2020: Debit card spending for both Cyber Monday and Black Friday was up slightly on last year, according to analysis by Bank of Ireland. Overall debit card spend in November also increased, with high street spend understandably down and online spend significantly up, and it was a particularly busy month for techies, gamblers and bookworms.

The value of Cyber Monday debit card transactions was up 8% on last year, with Black Friday spend up 1%. The first day of reopening for non-essential retailers (Tuesday 1st December) was busy for shoppers, with Bank of Ireland debit card transactions up 42% on the same day last year.

While non-essential retail was closed, there was a 7% increase in debit card spend in November. It was a busy month for techie shoppers, with spending on computers, software and electronics up 82% year on year, while gambling rose by 65% compared to 2019. Bookworms were also busy, with shoppers spending 43% more on books and printing supplies. Spending on groceries was up 24% while passenger transport transactions were down 70%, accommodation spend down 81% and restaurants down 45%. Amazon had a stellar performance in November, with Bank of Ireland debit card spend through the website almost tripling year on year.

From Friday to Monday last weekend, Bank of Ireland customers carried out 6.3m point of sale transactions (+6% on 2019), 2.5m of which were contactless (+20% on 2019). 2.4m transactions were conducted at Bank of Ireland’s ATM network (-36% on 2019), with 43,000 logins to the new mobile app at its peak hour on Friday, a new record.

Discussing recent consumer trends, Ger Thompson, Head of Current Account Banking, Bank of Ireland said: “Although non-essential retailers were closed, debit card spend on Black Friday and Cyber Monday was still up compared to last year. We also saw a significant rebound on Tuesday, as stores reopened and shoppers re-emerged after the easing in restrictions.

“November trends were very interesting and mirrored some consumer spending habits from earlier in the pandemic. There was an increase in spend on items such as electronics and books as consumers bunkered down at home. While cash and ATM usage remain low, contactless is still trending up and our new app hit record activity, as consumers continue to focus on the safest way to bank and spend.”

Bank of Ireland debit card transactions – November 2020 versus November 2019
Computers/electronics +82%
Gambling +65%
Books and printing +43%
Groceries +24%
Accommodation -81%
Passenger transport -70%
Restaurants -45%
Clothing -17%