The monetary regulator, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has released data regarding the state of credit card business in India, which shows that, the number of credit card issuances has increased for the third month in a row.
The data shows that the in May, the number of credit cards grew by 128,000. HDFC Bank was the largest contributor to this number. It added about 69,974 cards in May. Next largest contributor was SBI, which added 34,183 cards in the same month. At the end of May, 17.9 million credit cards were issued in the country, which is the highest number so far since Mar 2011.
On this issue, a top official of a foreign bank, who is in charge of its credit card business, said, "Most banks have resumed credit card business in the last 12-15 months. But some large banks were still reducing their card base, as delinquency rates were high. Hence, the outstanding number has been declining till the beginning of this calendar year."
The official further added that the numbers started increasing in the last few months, when large banks jumped into the credit card market and started the credit card operations very aggressively, again.
The country's largest lender, SBI has a 2.25 million customer base in this segment. HDFC Bank, which is the largest player in this segment in the country, has a customer base of 5.7 million in the credit card business.