The Central Bank issues statistical information on credit and debit cards every quarter. The last release, which relates to November 2018 may be found at https://centralbank.ie/statistics/data-and-analysis/credit-and-banking-statistics/credit-and-debit-card-statistics.
The Central Bank has advised that the total value in November 2018 of:
- Convenience and extended credit card debt was €1,652,381,000
- Outstanding interest-bearing extended credit card debt was €1,077,775,000
- Convenience credit card debt was €574,606,000
The Deputy should be aware that:
- Convenience credit is defined as the credit granted at an interest rate of 0 per cent in the period between payment transaction(s) undertaken with the card during one billing cycle and the date at which debit balances from the specific billing cycle becomes due.
- Extended credit is defined as the credit granted after the due date(s) of the previous billing cycle(s) has/have passed, i.e. debit amounts on the card accounts that have not been settled when this was first possible, for which an interest rate or tiered interest rates usually greater than 0 per cent are charged. Often minimum installments per month have to be made to at least partially repay extended credit.
The Central Bank has also advised that the weighted average interest rate on extended credit card debt was 14.84% in November 2018.
The Central Bank has advised me that they do not have any published data on the percentage of customers that do not make credit card repayments before the interest free period expires.