Better Buy: Square vs. Mastercard
E-commerce sales, where credit card use is twice as high as transactions made in person, continue to outpace total retail sales in the U.S., according to the Census Bureau. Two companies poised to take advantage of this trend are Mastercard Inc(NYSE: MA) and Square Inc(NYSE: SQ). Transaction-based revenue and profit rose 27% and 29%, respectively. What's important to note, however, is that Square is no longer a simple smartphone attachment that accepts card and digital payments at the point of sale. In Mastercard's fourth quarter, revenue rose to $4.8 billion, a 15% increase year over year, and adjusted earnings per share (EPS) grew to $1.55, a 36% increase over last year's fourth quarter.