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Strong Finish to the First Quarter

I think it’s safe to say that Spring is upon us and you can go ahead and stow away your snow blowers and dust off those mountain bikes. Some would say it was a long winter, but some businesses here have seen their sales climb from a few extra weeks of cold weather.

Looking at Wind River’s portfolio as a whole, more of our merchants benefited from this wintry Spring averaging 7.5% growth in credit card sales this quarter over Q1 of 2014. Specifically, 60.8% of our client portfolio saw an increase in their credit card sales volume with the largest gainers in the Healthcare and Accounting Fields. The Travel and Apparel Industries came in a close 2nd perhaps due to Easter & March Madness, especially with the Badgers Final Four run. Even if you weren’t rooting for Bucky, consumer confidence seems to remain high overall heading into the full swing of Spring and the 2nd quarter of 2015, which is reflected in increased sales trends seen throughout the country.

It was announced Tuesday that total sales for the first quarter for the U.S. retail and food services were up 2.2% compared to the same time period in 2014 with Food Services and Drinking Places up 7.7% this March compared to March of 2014.1 Taking a look at the news media, most reports point to the economy in February and March improving moderately with the biggest gainers in high-tech services such as cybersecurity and web development. Auto sales also rose in most areas along with travel, which is to be expected around this time of year. We’ll keep a lookout to see how the numbers trend into next quarter and hope to find just as many, if not more, of our merchants seeing sales increase as we work into the summer months ahead.

We realize that credit cards are only part of the overall picture of your total sales and business, and we look forward to your feedback on how we can help improve your payment environment. Let us know if you find this information helpful or interesting. You can contact us at info@windriverfinancial.com.

1 The U.S. Census Bureau’s Advance Monthly Sales Report for Retail and Food Services March 2015

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