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Friday, February 23, 2007

5,000 Complaints A Day

The financial ombudsman is receiving up to 5,000 complaints a day from angry bank customers, in respect of high penalty charges.

It seems that, as the numbers of complaints are rocketing, there is something of a "customer revolt" over bank charges.

A year ago the Ombudsman received about 100 calls a day from the public over bank charges.

The FOS said the number of complaints it is receiving is unprecedented.

A spokesman said:

"It has even eclipsed mortgage endowment complaints. We usually get 200 to 250 of them a day, so it has well surpassed that."

Martin Lewis, financial pundit, said:

"The campaign to reclaim has been given huge impetus this week by the angry response of UK consumers to the enormous profits being reported day after day by Britain's banks, who are taking money unfairly from people's accounts.

This week it hit tipping point, as a whole new band of Britons grit their teeth to get their money back
."

The banks are also waiting for the results of an investigation by the OFT on the issue of charges.

Earlier this week Barclays posted £7BN in profits, and analysts predict the "big five" alone will report more than £38BN in profits from last year.

Whilst the "consumer revolt" gathers momentum, those who manage to reclaim their charges should remember that banks are not charities. In the event that the banks are blocked from making money by levying charges for unauthorised overdrafts etc, the banks will find other methods of making money, such as abolishing free banking.

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