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04.05.17

Credit Card Complaints Increase in CFPB’s Latest Snapshot Report

Billing disputes and fraud, identity theft and embezzlement are among the most common complaints that consumers have about their credit cards, according to the CFPB. The federal agency’s latest month snapshot report highlight credit card complaints, of which 116,000 have reached the CFPB since July 2011.

Credit card complaints account for 10 percent of all complaints received by the CFPB. Credit cards stand as the fourth-most-complained-about product. The average monthly number of credit card complaints increased 17 percent between December 2016 and February 2017 compared with the same three-month period a year ago. The average monthly number of prepaid complaints increased only 1 percent—from 219 to 220 complaints—over that same period.

Types of Credit Card Complaints

Billing disputes account for 17 percent of those credit card complaints, the CFPB said. Some of the other common complaints include:

  • Other, 11 percent
  • Fraud, identity theft and embezzlement, 10 percent
  • Closing and cancelling accounts, 7 percent
  • APR or interest rate, 6 percent
  • Late fee, 4 percent
  • Customer service, 4 percent
  • Advertising and marketing, 4 percent
  • Delinquent account, 3 percent
  • Credit determination, 3 percent

When it comes to the largest increase in credit card complaints by state, Mississippi led that pack with a 257 percent jump in December 2016 to February 2017 compared with December 2015 to February 2016. Washington, D.C. (93 percent) and Alabama (91 percent) also had high rates of growth in complaints. For decreases in complaints, Rhode Island (down 32 percent), Oklahoma (22 percent) and Nevada (13 percent) were the leaders.

“Credit cards are a vital financial tool used daily by more than half of all adults in this country,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Consumers deserve clear guidance and need to be able to resolve problems that arise with their cards.”

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