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Latest News

Mastercard SpendingPulse: Love for Experiences Is in the Air this Valentine's Day

Restaurants and Hotels expected to see strong sales growth.

Originally Published Mastercard.

By Julia Monti

Valentine's Day is a holiday known for its roses, chocolate, jewelry and, increasingly, experiences like eating out and travel, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse™, which provides insights into overall retail spending trends across all payment types, including cash and check.


An analysis of U.S. retail spending trends in the week leading up to and including Valentine's Day found that 2019 could see another positive sales performance, with experiential spending on restaurants and hotels expected to see solid growth.

Other key findings for the pre-Valentine's Day sales week of February 8 to 14, compared to the same period in 2018:

  • Spending on experiential gifts is expected to continue to grow.
    • For restaurants, retail sales could increase 5.4% to $15.3 billion.
    • Hotels sales may increase 9.0% year-over-year to $1.4 billion.
  • More traditional Valentine's Day gifts like jewelry and luxury goods may see less traction this year.
    • Jewelry sales are expected to decrease this year to $1.1 billion. This follows a surge in 2018 (compared to 2017) of 26.9 percent.
    • Luxury sales could be roughly flat (down just .4%), generating $250 million.
  • Retail sales growth for Valentine's Day has seen its ups and downs in recent years, with a noteworthy dip across the board in 2017 due to several factors. Impacts included weather, the day of the week the holiday fell on and overall economic confidence.
  • Last year, tax cuts and larger corporate bonuses coupled with a favorable employment environment led to positive growth in all of the sectors measured (restaurants, jewelry, hotel and luxury).
The Conversation

Mastercard: The 2019 FinTech Effect for Banking and Commerce

As an exciting 2019 gets underway, so too does the latest wave of Mastercard Start Path companies entering the program.

Originally Published by Mastercard.

By Amy Neale

And…exhale.

Since 2014, Mastercard has scoured every corner of the globe to find the world's best startups. Finding them, however, is only one piece of the puzzle, and our startup engagement program, Start Path, is much more than a reconnaissance mission.

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Money: people love and hate to talk about it. They want to make it, they want to use it, and they love having it, but when it comes to actually thinking about it, how we get it, how we use and how it helps or hurt us—that's when people start to ask questions.

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Know the Rules to Break the Rules in 2019: Mastercard Podcast's Second Season is Ready

Fortune Favors the Bold helps break assumptions about money.

Originally Published by Mastercard.

Money: people love and hate to talk about it. They want to make it, they want to use it, and they love having it, but when it comes to actually thinking about it, how we get it, how we use and how it helps or hurt us—that's when people start to ask questions.

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Mastercard Names Donald Chesnut as Chief Experience Officer

In this newly created role, Chestnut will lead a team that supports the organization's delivery of the best consumer payment experience.

Mastercard announced on Jan. 4 that Donald Chesnut will join the company as its first chief experience officer, effective January 14, 2019.

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Mastercard: Forging New Paths Toward More Inclusive Growth and Opportunity for All

By focusing on inclusion, we can help displaced people and the communities that welcome them achieve financial resilience and opportunity.

Originally Published by Mastercard.

This week in New York, the UN Member States voted in favor of the Global Compact on Refugees. The integration of the world's 25.4 million refugees into new communities is a topic that touches nations all over the world, but one that is also fraught with controversy and tension.

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Mastercard and Next Retail Concepts Upgrade Online Shopping Just in Time for the Holidays

Consumers can now shop for exclusive products from Fred Segal using proprietary technology from Next Retail Concepts.

Originally Published by Mastercard.

The days of mindlessly scrolling through pages of products while shopping online are over thanks to a new ecommerce experience from Mastercard and Next Retail Concepts. The innovative digital environment lets shoppers browse and buy just like they are in a physical store—across any browser.

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