Retailers Report Credit Card Use In Decline

More Customers Paying With Cash

With consumer confidence on the decline and many shoppers tightening their belts, retailers are surprised to report how many people are paying for purchases.

For six years, Norma Talbott has owned and operated a small Frisco jewelry store.  In a tough economy she said her sales have been surprisingly stable with the exception of one major change, people are now paying with cash.

For some, life without credit cards has been a way of life for a while.  For others, it's a changing mindset brought on by Wall Street woes.

Visa and MasterCard both reported growth in their last quarterly earning statements, but Visa said that growth was due in large part to its debit card business as consumers shift away from traditional credit card spending.

Mike Davis with the Cox School of Business said if the trend sticks it's a good sign that consumers are getting wiser.

"It certainly means people are being more careful, that they're feeling stressed about this economy and they ought to," said Davis.

The thing Davis said would be really concerning is if the economy continues to head south and credit card spending goes up.

Davis said that is an indicator people are in an emergency situation and credit is the only source of money available.

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