Visa U.S. Spending Momentum Index Remains Robust in May
Visa’s May SMI reading indicates a healthy U.S.
Visa (NYSE: V) today released the May reading of the Visa U.S.
Spending Momentum Index (SMI), an economic indicator designed to be
a timely gauge of the health of consumer spending. The Visa SMI
delivers insight into what drives upturns and downturns in spending
by measuring the breadth of the momentum supporting these
In May 2021, the Visa SMI remained historically elevated at
123.3, indicating that the U.S. consumer recovery remains on firm
ground. Exceptionally low SMI readings this time last year are
creating some distortions in the true signal of consumer spending.
At its current level, the Visa SMI implies that 59 percent of
consumers are now spending more than they did a year ago, while
only 41 percent are spending the same or less. Compared to May
2019, which was not affected by the pandemic and lockdowns, 52
percent of consumers are spending more, which is up slightly from
the 51 percent of consumers who were spending more in April. The
implication is that while the SMI decelerated on a month-over-month
basis, the breadth of consumer spending actually expanded in May
once adjusting the figures for last year’s low readings.
“May marks the one-year anniversary of the beginning of the
consumer momentum recovery,” said Wayne Best, Visa’s Chief
Economist. “The SMI’s strong reading again in May reflects the
solid ongoing recovery taking place in the consumer sector.”
The gains in spending momentum, however, remain uneven across
regions of the country. The SMI for the Midwest region continued to
lag other parts of the country, with an SMI reading of 122.1 in
May. The West ranked among the regions with the strongest consumer
momentum at 125.5 as the region continues its gradual reopening
process and is home to several states where more than 50 percent of
the adult population has been vaccinated.
Previously only available to Visa clients, Visa is now
publishing components of the SMI on a monthly basis for the general
public, in part to help track economic recovery progress. The SMI
builds on Visa’s commitment to powering commerce by providing tools
and insights that help to gauge consumers’ ability to spend and
their overall participation in the economic recovery.
About the Visa SMI
The Visa SMI is based on a sample of aggregated, depersonalized
VisaNet data. Visa adjusts this data through proprietary methods to
exclude factors that do not reflect spending momentum. The
resulting sample data is then aggregated using a diffusion index
framework where index values are scored from 0 to 200. When the
Visa SMI rises above 100, the consumer spending momentum is
strengthening and when it falls below 100, the spending momentum is
weakening as fewer consumers are spending more relative to the
previous year. The index is adjusted for day of week, month,
holidays, and broad annual trends, and these seasonal adjustments
are subject to revision each year.
The Visa SMI does not take into account the volume of payments;
nor does it rely on all Visa-branded credentials, and therefore
does not reflect Visa operational or financial performance. It is
intended for informational purposes only and is offered on an “as
is” basis without any warranties of any kind, express or implied.
Each SMI report is as of the publication date.
Eligible Visa clients in the U.S. may access more detailed and
customized insights at the national, regional and local spending
level, including spending on the main categories of goods and
For more information about the Visa U.S. Spending Momentum
Index, please visit
Visa (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our
mission is to connect the world through the most innovative,
reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals,
businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing
network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the
world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction
messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is
a catalyst for the rapid growth of digital commerce on any device,
for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to
digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and
scale to reshape the future of commerce. For more information,
visit About Visa, visa.com/blog and @VisaNews.
version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210609005193/en/
Andy Gerlt firstname.lastname@example.org
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