The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) has issued details of the complaints it received between October 1 and December 31 2016. During this quarter, the FOS received 70,908 new cases, of which 36,065 (51%) concerned payment protection insurance (PPI). Whilst this is well below the 100,000 or more PPI cases per quarter that the FOS was receiving at one time, the product still accounts for a significant number of complaints by any measure.

Current account complaints are now in second place, with 4,014 new complaints received during the quarter (6% of the total). Packaged bank accounts (PBA) are the third most complained about product, with 3,785 cases (5% of the total).

However, when we look at the figures for the full 2016/17 financial year to date, i.e. since April 1 2016, PBAs are well ahead of current accounts in second place.

It was another busy three months for payday loan complaints, with 2,529 new complaints taking the total for the three quarters of the 2016/17 year to date to 7,810. This is already well in excess of the 3,168 payday complaints received in the whole of 2015/16.

Car and motorcycle insurance, personal pensions, catalogue shopping, debt collection and pet insurance are other areas where the final 2016/17 total is likely to be higher than that for the previous year.

When we look at the proportions of complaints being upheld by the FOS in each area, then we notice that the uphold rate for PPI is falling. 66% of PPI complaints were decided in the customer’s favour in 2015/16, but in 2016/17 to date this is only 54%, and in the last quarter the uphold rate is 44%. This may suggest that many of the most obvious cases of mis-selling have already been considered.

The payday loan complaint uphold rate is 59% in the last quarter and 56% in the whole of 2016/17. Whilst this is lower than the equivalent figure of 66% for 2015/16, the fact that this product continues to have the highest uphold rate of all should remind the UK’s payday lenders that there is no cause for complacency, and that they must do their utmost to treat their customers fairly.

Other products with uphold rates in excess of 40% in the last quarter included: catalogue shopping, warranties, home emergency cover, self-invested personal pensions and store cards. At 13%, debt counselling has the lowest uphold rate of any category, so here firms are successfully defending 87% of all complaints passed to the FOS. And although it still accounts for a significant chunk of the total complaints, the uphold rate for PBAs remains low, at 16%.

The information shown in this article was correct at the time of publication. Articles are not routinely reviewed and as such are not updated. Please be aware the facts, circumstances or legal position may change after publication of the article.