May 26, 2015 12:46
A slight recovery in the real estate market this year led to more people moving house, pushing up credit card spending.
According to the Bank of Korea, credit card purchases of furniture reached W124.4 billion (US$1=W1,091) in January and W121.6 billion in February, up 40 percent and 35 percent from a year earlier. The figure for electronic goods also rose 3.4 percent in January and 1.1 percent in February.
An increasing number of car buyers also bought their vehicle on their credit card to take advantage of reward points and other benefits. Credit card purchases of new cars rose 16 percent on-year in January and 15 percent in February.
The figure for the retail industry also increased. Credit card spending in department stores edged up 4.6 percent in February from a year earlier, while the figure rose 11 percent for large discount stores and 25 percent for supermarkets.
The increase is mostly due to the lunar New Year holidays falling in February this year.
By contrast, credit card spending on leisure activities dwindled 0.1 percent in January and 3.6 percent in February. The figure fell further for fashion -- 9.7 percent in January and 6.7 percent in February.
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