23 February 2016
The Financial Ombudsman Service today releases the latest six-monthly complaints data relating to banks, insurers and other financial businesses.
The figures published today show that the ombudsman took on a total of 164,347 new cases in the second half of 2015 – a slight decrease of 6% on the previous period.
Of the total cases referred to the ombudsman in the second half of 2015, payment protection insurance (PPI) made up 56% of new complaints – with 92,667 new PPI complaints, virtually on a par with the previous period (94,091).
For complaints about financial products other than PPI, the number decreased by 10% to 71,663. This reflects a downward trend in some areas such as packaged bank accounts, mortgages and pensions, as the end of the year approached.
The average uphold rate (where the ombudsman found in the consumer’s favour) over the six month period was 53% – ranging from 5% to 97% across the individual businesses. 220 businesses feature in the data in total.
Chief ombudsman Caroline Wayman said:
The financial services sector has been through a challenging and volatile period in the eight years since the ombudsman first began to publish data about individual financial businesses. Though it still makes sense to plan for uncertainty and change ahead, the signs are that complaints are now broadly levelling off as we move onto a more even keel in the coming year.
Complaints about PPI still continue to make up over half of our workload. During 2015, PPI complaints finally began to approach stable levels – but we’re still seeing the volume of cases at a much higher level than many people expected.
There are many factors that can influence the complaints we see, from fluctuations in the stock market to extreme weather conditions – and more people knowing their rights when things go wrong. That’s why I believe it’s important that we continue to find new ways to work so we can resolve complaints quickly, while sharing our knowledge so businesses can avoid the ‘big claims issues’ of the past.