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Slower Direct Mail Growth Predicted Overall as Interest Rates Rise, Despite Strong First Half ShowingChicago (September 7, 2006)— Consumers have received more credit card direct mail for the first half of this year than in 2005, according to Mintel Comperemedia, a competitive intelligence service that analyzes direct mail and print media. The service estimates that close to 4.2 billion direct mail pieces were distributed to U.S. consumers during the first half of 2006. This is significantly higher than last year’s estimates, which reached close to 3.9 billion pieces during the same time period. The mailings include acquisition, cross-selling, and follow-up mailings. The top mailers remained the same as last year, with Chase, Capital One Bank, American Express, Citibank and HSBC leading in direct mail distribution. Chase and Citibank have both shown decreased direct mail activity in the credit card sector by 7 and 8 percent respectively for the same first half-year period from 2005 to this year. American Express experienced a 20 percent bump in direct mail activity during the same period, primarily due to their new cards and offerings.