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News Now

CU System
Consumer complaints about banking industry up 15
ARLINGTON, VA. (2/26/09)--The banking industry received the third-highest number of complaints in 2008 out of all U.S. industries, according to the 2008 annual report released earlier this month by the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Banks received 21,021 complaints, an increase of 15% over the previous year. It was the highest increase of all the industries studied. The cell phone industry was first in complaints and new car dealers ranked second. However, the BBB report indicates that these industries also have a higher rate of resolution with consumers than the average rate--73%--across all industries in 2008. Banks resolved 96% of complaints, the BBB report said. “While BBB saw a 7% increase in [overall] complaints, we also experienced a 15% increase in requests from consumers for pre-purchase information on the reliability of businesses,” said Steve Cox, BBB spokesperson. "Given the current economic recession, consumers are being more cautious on where and how they spend their money and are looking for objective information that helps them easily and quickly make informed decisions on the reliability of businesses,” he added. “Industries that do a large volume of business are naturally going to have a larger number of complaints. This is why it’s important to look at how a company responded when BBB approached them with consumer complaints, and not just the sheer number of complaints,” Cox said. Of the top 10 industries for complaints, only two saw a decrease in complaints: Internet services saw a 16% decrease, and furniture store complaints decreased 3%.
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