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Eased restrictions boost SZÉP card spending

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Hungarians' spending using the SZÉP voucher card climbed in February as restrictions were loosened to allow purchases of food in stores, card issuers told state news wire MTI.

OTP Bank said its clients spent HUF 22.2 billion using their SZÉP cards in February, 14% more than in January. Over one-fifth of purchases were in supermarkets, the lender added.

Close to 4,000 businesses, mostly supermarkets, joined the OTP SZÉP card network in January and February, bringing the total number of locations with SZÉP POS terminals close to 55,000.

K&H Bank said its clients' SZÉP card purchases rose 20% in February from a month earlier. It noted that almost 6,500 retailers accept K&H SZÉP cards. Nearly one-quarter of businesses that joined the network in recent weeks were located in the capital, it added. 

The looser SZÉP card restrictions are in force until the end of May.

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