Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) recently announced a partnership with TSYS, a global payments company, that will allow customers to use their Mastercard to split transactions into installments before, during or after checkout.
Mastercard Joins Paypal: Three out of four Americans have used installment plans during the pandemic and will continue to do so in the future, Mastercard said in a press release, citing its own research.
Mastercard, which is accepted in 210 countries, said it's “creating a future where payments keep pace with the way we live.”
An Installment Trend: This announcement comes on the heels of Paypal Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:PYPL) announcing it's adding an interest-free installment payment plan option on certain purchases in a new program called “Pay in 4.”
Both of these companies are joining the “buy now, pay later” industry and players such as Affirm and Afterpay.
Mastercard's installment plan is notable for being available wherever Mastercard is accepted, and not only with certain partner companies, as with Affirm.
The Credit Environment: Last month, consumer spending slowed after months of large increases. And credit dependence has dropped in recent months.
The New York Fed released a report earlier this summer that said credit card debt has decreased nationwide. This was attributed in part to added government transfer payments intended to provide relief during the coronavirus pandemic.
Competition Or Desperation? Mastercard’s foray into the “buy now, pay later” world may be an attempt to drum up usage of their cards and perhaps convince users to try other Mastercard services, outside of a desire to be competitive with PayPal and Affirm.
PayPal does charge a late fee if a payment is missed in their “Pay in 4” program; the official release from Mastercard did not indicate if a late fee would be charged if a payment was missed.
Be on the lookout for other partnerships from major credit card companies.
Photo courtesy of Mastercard.