FCA complaints are still dominated by PPI mis-selling

Oliver Gill
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The FCA expects to unveil the deadline for PPI complaints by June 2017 at the latest

The number of complaints lodged against financial services firms nudged down in the first six months of 2016 according to statistics released by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The total number of complaints dropped by 2.6 per cent compared with the final six months of 2015. Barclays topped the list and received over a quarter of a million objections.

Top five most complained about financial institutions

Financial institution Number of complaints Change from second half of 2015
Barclays 287,463 3 per cent increase
Lloyds Bank (part of Lloyds Banking Group) 213,163 7 per cent decrease
Bank of Scotland (part of Lloyds Banking Group) 173,646 5 per cent decrease
HSBC 124,891 3 per cent increase
National Westminster Bank (part of RBS) 121,197 10 per cent decrease

Read more: City watchdog slaps Aviva with £8.2m fine

Reflecting on the results, Barclays highlighted that its non-PPI complaints had declined by 11 per cent in the first six months and said the overall rise was driven by its proactive approach to send letters to potential PPI claimants.

"We are listening to feedback so we can fix the things that aren’t working and exceed what our customers expect from their bank, said Barclays' head of client and customer experience Matt Hammerstein.

Just over 2m grievances were received by the FCA during the period which led to a total of £1.96bn being paid out by companies in redress of them – this was down one per cent on the prior six months.

Far and away the top concern remained the mis-selling of payment protection insurance (PPI), attracting 930,000 complaints.

Read more: FCA to consult on compensation for unsuitable pension transfer advice

Christopher Woolard, director of strategy and competition at the FCA, labelled the small aggregate decrease as "encouraging" and added: "Firms still need to continue to ensure they are doing all they can to reduce consumer dissatisfaction."

Barclays was top of the list on three of the five key complaint areas identified by the FCA – banking and credit cards, general insurance and investments.

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