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How Spending Differs Between Men and Women

Adam Rust's picture

Posted July 24, 2014

Card.Com just released an interesting study that documents how spending differs among the sexes. The data in the report is derived from the prepaid debit card accounts that they manage. 

The findings show that men are more likely to spend money at a service station, whereas women are more like to buy at variety and discount stores. 

While the findings themselves may not be surprising, Card.Com's effort is relevant. Few, if anyone, has attempted to study spend by demographics. The fact that they can do it suggests that more people could be thinking about these kinds of questions. I have always hoped that the CPFB would attempt to incorporate more known spending patterns in to the disclosures that it will ultimately propose for prepaid debit cards. The Federal Reserve has segmented a variety of spending metrics by user characteristics, but they have not been demographic in their foci. They have tended to look at other things. For example, the Fed examined how spending differs when a consumer sets up a direct deposit on to their card. 

Card.Com earned some press a while back when they marketed the Mike Conley Prepaid Visa Card  That was a bit of an exaggeration, because the real fact is that Card.Com markets thousands of cards in multiple thematic groupings. Card.Com has the Jim Lachey (o-line, Washington Redskins), Hakeem Olajuwan (center, Houston Rockets), or the Joe Dumars (guard, Detroit Pistons) card. You can get an Elvis Presley card, a Where's Waldo card, and even three versions of the Bacon Card.  

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