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Spending with BBVA credit and debit cards or BBVA POS terminals grew 56% y-o-y in March due to the base effect caused by the start of the lockdown period a year ago. Compared to March 2019, the growth in card consumption was lower (18%).
Total consumption continues to be unable to grow steadily, remaining at around 0% YoY. The effect of the beginning of the lockdown a year ago is starting to be felt in the different categories. Based on our indicators, activity is expected to grow again in 1Q21, although a second wave of contagions could weaken consumption.
During the second half of February, total consumption recorded an average drop of 2.6% YoY, which contracted to -8% at the beginning of March. The growth of the construction sector ratifies the trend of our spending indicators. Changes in the dynamics of ATM cash withdrawals were observed.
The decline in card purchases moderated to -7% year-on-year in February due to the recovery in spending with Spanish cards, both online (37%) and face-to-face (-4%). Foreign card transactions continued to decline at double-digit rates (-73%).
Total card consumption grew at an average real rate of 0.4% in February. Our real-time indicators ratify the correlation with official data on supermarket sales and electricity demand. With the inoculation process in progress, no significant changes in spending were observed.
January´s total consumption with BBVA cards fell 1.6% YoY in real terms and moderated the decline for the fifth consecutive month. Goods expenses contracted 7.8% YoY while service expenses fell 24.6% YoY.
February 5, 2021
Spain | Impact of COVID-19 on consumption in real time and high frequency in jan-21
Spending with BBVA credit and debit cards or BBVA POS terminals fell by -11% year-on-year in January, after rising 6% in December. The drop in face-to-face purchases, both with Spanish cards (-9%) and foreign (-68%), accompanied that of online purchases with foreign cards (-73%).
Total consumption made with BBVA cards registered an average YoY growth of 1% in real terms during the last week of measurement. During that period, spending on goods fell 5.7% YoY and spending on services stabilized at -22% YoY.