Fewer complaints against financial firms

Consumers were a lot less disgruntled with their financial institutions last year, going by numbers out on Thursday.

There were 893 complaints made to the Financial Industry Disputes Resolution Centre (Fidrec) between July last year and June this year, down 23 per cent from the previous 12 months.

Most of the ire was directed at banks and finance companies, which attracted 396 gripes or 44 per cent of the total. But that was 10 per cent less that the previous year.

Life insurers were next on 289 or 32 per cent of the overall complaints - 33 per cent below a year earlier. There were 167 complaints about general insurers - a fall of 23 per cent.

Like the previous financial year, more than half of the complaints were related to financial institutions' practices and policies, while 36 per cent concerned market conduct, and then service standards.

Most of the gripes centred on the provision of inappropriate advice, misrepresentation or disclosure issues.

For the banks, finance companies, life and general insurers as well as capital markets services licensees, disputes over liabilities also feature among the top complaints.