With five fewer shopping days to account for, holiday spending on credit cards in 1996 grew at a slower pace than the previous year.

Visa U.S.A., tracking sales on credit and debit cards for the holiday shopping season - the day after Thanksgiving through Dec. 31 - found a 4.72% dollar volume jump from 1995. By comparision, holiday shopping from Thanksgiving day to Christmas in 1995 compared to 1994 found a 24% increase.

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