US economy

Visa profit beats quarterly estimates on higher spending

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Visa credit card is seen on a computer keyboard in this picture illustration taken September 6, 2017. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/Illustration

NEW YORK (Reuters) -Visa Inc beat Wall Street quarterly estimates on Thursday as improving consumer sentiment, online shopping and an uptick in travel drove spending volumes.

The world’s largest payments processor said transactions rose 21% to $47.6 billion during the quarter compared with a year earlier, while cross-border volumes increased 40%.

Quarterly net revenues rose to $7.1 billion in the three months ended Dec. 31, an increase of 24% over the prior year.

“The growth in eCommerce, better than expected progress in the return of cross-border travel and a continuation of the recovery all contributed to an excellent quarter,” Visa (NYSE:) Chairman and Chief Executive Alfred Kelly said in a statement, adding he thinks recovery will continue despite the current surge in COVID-19 cases.

Visa reported profit of $3.9 billion, or $1.81 per share.

Analysts, on average, had estimated net income of $1.70 per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Shares rose by as much as 2.5% after market hours immediately following the company’s results.

Rival card companies Mastercard (NYSE:) Inc and American Express Co (NYSE:) also reported that they beat quarterly profit estimates this week, powered by renewed consumer spending on international travel, dining and shopping.

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