Black Friday Spending Was Strong. How People Pay for Gifts Is Upending Retailers.

Consumers are shifting away from store credit cards as brand loyalty wanes and interest rates rise

Updated Nov. 26, 2023 2:50 pm ET

Retailers aren’t just having trouble getting shoppers to buy sweaters and other holiday items this season. Store credit cards are also a tougher sell.

The cards, which typically can only be used at a particular chain, have been a lucrative source of revenue for retailers as merchandise sales have slowed. But the stream is drying up as Americans carry fewer cards and increasingly finance purchases with buy now, pay later providers. Interest rates surpassing 30% on some retailers’ credit cards aren’t helping, according to analysts.

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