What happened

Shareholders of Visa (V -0.05%) beat a booming market last month. Their stock rose 10% in April compared to a 5.2% spike in the S&P 500, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

The rally wasn't enough to put the credit card giant ahead of the market, though, as it is still trailing indexes over the past year.

A young woman uses a credit card to buy something online.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Investors were happy with Visa's latest earnings report, which in late April showed evidence of a gathering rebound. Revenue fell just 2% through March, compared to a 6% decline in the prior quarter. "We believe we are starting to see the beginning of the end [of the pandemic slump]," CEO Alfred Kelly said in a press release, "and the recovery is well under way in a number of key markets around the world."

Visa returned to rising payments volumes in the period, and its earnings beat expectations.

Now what

The financial services giant didn't issue a detailed outlook for the rest of the year, which will involve lots of volatility as the business goes up against cratering demand from the peak pandemic-shutdown weeks last year. But volumes, revenue, and earnings will likely hit a new record soon as long as economies keep recovering in places like the U.S., Europe, and China.