Bank Complaints Surge

It seems that despite being saved by them, banks are continuing to fail their customers as the number of new complaints against the large banking groups increased significantly. The Financial Ombudsman Service  (FOS) figures show Lloyds Banking Group as the most complained about, followed by Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland. Lloyds received 20,190 complaints, Barclays 10,892 and RBS 7098, with Lloyds achieving an impressive increase of around a third over their previous 6 month tale of woe. The release of the figures renewed criticism of the methodology behind them with the Association of British Insurers (ABI) calling for the data to take into account the amount of business being transacted. ABI Director of Consumer Strategy Maggie Craig says: “It is important for consumers to have clear and meaningful information about the performance of companies who manage their insurances and investments, including how they handle complaints” While she may be correct in theory, once you have reason to complain, I’m not sure that anything but a fair & successful conclusion really makes much difference to the customer. David Thomas, interim chief ombudsman of FOS, said: "there is evidently still room for significant improvement in the way other financial businesses handle complaints – judged by the proportion of cases where we overturn the decision that the businesses have themselves come to in their own earlier investigation of their customer complaints. "The data we have released today clearly shows that some businesses still need to do more to ensure that they deal with their customers’ complaints effectively and fairly – so that consumers do not then need to escalate their dissatisfaction to the ombudsman." All top 10 places in the list were filled by the banking industry.  Full details can be found here

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