The UK Cards Association - News news items from The UK Cards Associationen-usCopyright 2012 The UK Cards Association21/03/2017 12:06:49UK Cards Association logo and The UK Cards Association launch new research on customer vulnerabilityThe Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) and The UK Cards Association are today launching a new publication – Vulnerability; a guide for debt collection – that will help their members to better identify and support customers in vulnerable circumstances. Both trade associations worked in partnership with the University of Bristol’s Personal Finance Research Centre (PFRC) to develop this work. During 2016, the research team, led by Chris Fitch, Jamie Evans, and Colin Trend captured the experiences of 1,600 frontline collections and specialist staff from 27 UK lenders and debt collection firms, and used them to develop 21 practical and commercially realistic steps that can now be shared across the credit industry for the benefit of customers, but also adapted for use in sectors as diverse as utilities, telecoms, retail and Government. The guide describes strategies to help staff deal with specific and often challenging vulnerabilities, such as serious or terminal illness, bereavement, addiction, and mental health issues. The final section provides guidance on developing training programmes and working with partner agencies, and 21 case studies illustrate the difference that appropriate handling can make to a customer in need of a little extra support. Commenting on the launch, Stephen Sklaroff, Director General of the FLA, said: “The project has found and described best practice across the credit markets, and the guide suggests a number of practical ways in which staff can identify and cope effectively with often challenging situations. “Vulnerability: a guide for debt collection will be a great resource for firms in the credit industry, and will benefit customers by helping ensure prompt and practical help when they need it most.” Graham Peacop, Chief Executive at The UK Cards Association, said: “It is positive to see how the industry has moved on since Chris Fitch conducted his original research in 2010. However we are never complacent and this new research will enable our members to continue to develop the support they provide to their staff and to vulnerable customers.” In June, a second report on vulnerability from the same team will look at other parts of the lending markets with the aim of providing further insights into the effective identification and support of vulnerable customers across the full credit lifecycle. Notes to Editors 1. Vulnerability: a guide for debt collection has been financed by the FLA and The UK Cards Association. 2. The guide can be downloaded from the FLA, The UK Cards Association, and the Personal Finance Research Centre. 3. The following organisations have endorsed the guide and were represented on the research advisory group: the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), the Building Societies Association (BSA), the Money Advice Trust, the Credit Services Association (CSA), and the British Bankers Association (BBA). 4. Chris Fitch is an expert in the field of mental health and financial services at the Personal Finance Research Centre at the University of Bristol, and also works on the Money Advice Trust’s programme on vulnerability training and organisational change. The research team also included Colin Trend, Project Manager, Plymouth Focus Advice Centre, Jamie Evans from the Personal Finance Research Centre. 5. The Personal Finance Research Centre (PFRC) was established in 1998, and is an independent research centre based at the University of Bristol, which specialises in social research across all areas of personal finance, mainly from the consumer’s perspective. 6. The UK Cards Association is the trade body for the card payments industry in the UK, representing financial institutions which act as card issuers and acquirers. Members of the Association account for the vast majority of debit and credit cards issued in the UK – issuing in excess of 65 million credit cards and 100 million debit cards – and cover the whole of the payment card acquiring market. As an Association, UK Cards is committed to delivering a card payments industry that is constantly focused on improved outcomes for the customer. Further information is available here. The press office can be contacted on 020 3217 8436 or 7. The Finance & Leasing Association is the leading trade body for the asset, consumer and motor finance sectors in the UK, and the largest organisation of its kind in Europe. In 2016, our members provided £118 billion of new finance. £88 billion of this was in the form of consumer credit to support purchases ranging from cars to household goods and £30 billion was provided to businesses and the public sector, representing almost a third of UK investment in machinery, equipment and purchased software in the UK last year. The FLA press office can be contacted on 020 7420 9656 or UK Cards Association21/03/2017 12:06:49UK Card Expenditure Statistics: January 2017Payment card spending in January 2017 was £57.1 billion, up by £0.5 billion (0.8 per cent) on December. UK Cards Association17/03/2017 11:24:28Card spending up in 2016Consumers spent £647 billion using payment cards in 2016, new figures show. There were 14.8 billion card transactions in 2016, equivalent to 40.5 million transactions a day or 469 a second, data from The UK Cards Association shows. Three-quarters of retail spending (76.4 per cent) was on payment cards. Retail spending on cards in 2016 was £298 billion, compared to £290 billion in 2015. The majority of card spending in 2016 was made via debit cards, which accounted for £461 billion of spending. Total card spending in 2015 was £620 billion. Contactless payments accounted for £25 billion of spending, compared to £7.75 billion in 2015, with 2.9 billion contactless transactions made in 2016. In January 2016, one in seven card payments were made using contactless, compared to one in four in November. Graham Peacop, Chief Executive of The UK Cards Association, said: “Cards are the preferred way to pay for millions of consumers and underpin the retail economy. “Contactless cards are increasingly becoming the payment method of choice for everyday, low-value purchases, with a quarter of card payments now contactless.” The sub-sector with the highest spending was on food and drink, at £114 billion during 2016, an average of £9.5 billion per month. ENDS For further information contact the press office on 020 3217 8436 or Notes to editors: 1. The December Card Expenditure statistics are available on request. About The UK Cards Association The UK Cards Association is the trade body for the card payments industry in the UK, representing financial institutions which act as card issuers and acquirers. The Association promotes co-operation between industry participants in order to progress non-competitive matters of mutual interest; informs and engages with stakeholders to shape legal and regulatory developments; develops industry best practice; safeguards the integrity of the card payments industry by tackling card fraud; develops industry standards; and co-ordinates other industry-wide initiatives such as those aiming to deliver innovation. As an Association we are committed to delivering a card payments industry that is constantly focused on improved outcomes for the customer. UK Cards Association01/03/2017 15:42:38UK Card Expenditure Statistics: December 2016Total card spending in December 2016 was £56.5 billion, an increase of £500 million on November, and up from £52.2 billion in December 2015. UK Cards Association01/03/2017 15:20:36UK Card Expenditure Statistics: November 2016Richard Koch, Head of Policy at The UK Cards Association, said: “November saw the strongest monthly growth in card spending in four months, with debit cards accounting for most of the increase at the start of the Christmas shopping season. The record spend online highlights the importance of card payments in internet retail, and the wider economy too.” UK Cards Association18/01/2017 09:05:16One in four card payments now contactlessA quarter of all card transactions are now made via contactless, new figures from The UK Cards Association show. 325 million purchases were made using contactless debit and credit cards in November 2016, accounting for 25 per cent of all card payments in the month. The rise in contactless payments led to a record £2.9 billion being spent using the technology in November. This is an increase of 184 per cent from a year ago when contactless spending passed £1 billion in a month for the first time. There are now 101.8 million contactless debit and credit cards in circulation in the UK. Nine in 10 (88 per cent) contactless transactions are made using a debit card, a higher proportion than for card payments overall (78 per cent). Richard Koch, Head of Policy at The UK Cards Association, said: “With 125 taps every second in the UK, it’s clear that people are opting for contactless when they are at the till. No longer is it just for the lunchtime sandwich, consumers are using their contactless cards wherever they go - for the grocery shop, in clothes stores, and, increasingly, for the commute too.” The one in four milestone comes just three months after contactless reached a fifth of card transactions in August. In November 2015, 11 per cent of card transactions were contactless. The average contactless transaction was £8.95 in November, up from £8.03 a year ago. UK Cards Association16/01/2017 09:15:18All Leisure Holidays LtdFollowing the cessation of trading at All Leisure Holidays Ltd (trading under Swan Hellenic cruises and Voyages of Discovery cruises), this guidance is provided on the protections available to customers who have purchased travel or a holiday package using a credit and/or debit card. Where a booking is a holiday package including a flight element, customers can pursue their claims for a refund as follows. If payment was made with: UK Cards Association05/01/2017 16:00:43