The 28 per cent drop in enquiries from 3,456 to 2,501 was also reflected in a 23 per cent drop in new cases – with 2,021 complaints formally lodged with the regulator compared to 2,628 a year earlier.
However, the number of complaints then referred on to an ombudsman for adjudication rose this year to 629 from 401, though the proportion of cases upheld was largely unchanged at 26 per cent.
The mortgage industry is one of the areas of least concern to the FOS, as it produces less than two percent of enquiries and five per cent of ombudsman decisions.
PPI and payday loans
Overall the FOS received a total of 136,681 enquiries during the three-month period, and of that figure 12,538 were passed to an ombudsman for a final decision, with 30 per cent of resolved complaints upheld.
Payment protection insurance (PPI) dominated complaints received, accounting for 38 per cent of the total, but only 19 per cent of the 3,639 sent to an ombudsman were upheld.
In contrast, 62 per cent of payday loan complaints were upheld.
These formed the second largest body of complaints with 10,341 enquiries made and 1,050 cases referred for adjudication.
Claims management firms
The FOS also published details of complaints held against claims management companies (CMCs) for the first time, with 43 per cent upheld.
Complaints involving PPI make up around 60 per cent of its CMCs work.
This includes people who believe they’ve been scammed by a CMC – sometimes having paid upfront fees on the promise of a large PPI payout, or having been offered a gift card they have not received.
“The CMCs in question are often acting without authorisation, or are fraudulent clones of legitimate authorised firms. Complaints involving accident management are also growing as a proportion of our work,” the FOS noted.