(Reuters) - Visa Inc beat Wall Street estimates for quarterly profit on Wednesday, as the payments network processed more transactions on the back of higher consumer spending in the holiday season.
The company said total payments volumes and the number of processed transactions both rose 11 percent, sending its shares up 2.43 percent after the bell.
The United States had its strongest holiday season in six years backed on the strength in the economy. According to a Dec. 26 report by Mastercard, holiday spending rose 5.1 percent to more than $850 billion (£651 billion).
This boosted payments volume, which represents the dollar amount of purchases made with cards carrying Visa's branding. The company charges a fee every time a merchant swipes a card that uses its network.
Payments volume at Visa is improving as it is heavily marketing and trying to bolster revenue at its Visa Direct platform, which enables real-time funds delivery directly to financial accounts using card credentials.
Net income at the world's largest payment processor rose to $2.98 billion, or $1.30 per Class A share, in the first quarter ended Dec. 31, from $2.52 billion, or $1.07 cents per Class A share, a year earlier.
Excluding one-time items, Visa earned $1.30 per share, beating the analyst average estimate of $1.25, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. It was not immediately clear if the numbers were comparable.
Net revenue rose 13.24 percent to $5.51 billion in the quarter.
(Reporting by Diptendu Lahiri in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)