Agency Debuts Credit Card Complaint Database

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has launched the first public Consumer Complaint Database on credit cards, and also reported that it has received 17,000 complaints from July 21, 2011 through June 1.
The database allows the public to know what is being complained about and why, and how the credit card provider has responded.
Some financial industry trade groups are opposed to the public database. The American Bankers Association said it would amount to an “outing” of a bank’s relationship with customers based on “incomplete, unrepresentative and unverified” data.
The database contains certain data collected by the CFPB, including the type of complaint, the date of submission, the consumer’s zip code, and the company that the complaint concerns.
The database also includes information about the actions taken on a complaint – whether the company’s response was timely, how the company responded, and whether the consumer disputed the company’s response.
It does not include confidential information about a consumer’s identity.
The beta version of the Consumer Complaint Database went live at 8 a.m. Eastern time today at: www.consumerfinance.gov/complaintdatabase.
“Each and every time we hear from American consumers about their troublesome transactions with financial products, it gives us important insight,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “The information helps us and it should be available to help others too.  By making our data publicly available, initially in the area of credit cards, we hope to improve the transparency and efficiency of this essential consumer market.”
The most common type of credit card complaints is billing disputes.
Since December 2011, the median amount of consumer relief reported was about $130, with $25 being the most common amount. Those figures come from the more than 2,000 complaints where credit card companies reported monetary relief.
The CFPB officially began taking mortgage complaints in December 2011 and has received 19,000 mortgage complaints.
The most common type of mortgage complaints have to do with consumers having difficulty paying and have to do with loan modifications, collections, or foreclosure.
The median amount of monetary relief reported was approximately $410 for the 600 mortgage complaints where companies reported relief.
The CFPB officially began taking complaints on bank products and services in March 2012. The agency has received 6,500 complaints. The median amount of monetary relief reported was about $100 for the more than 1,000 bank product and service complaints where companies reported relief.

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