The CFPB’s June 2017 complaint report could serve as a call to arms to state attorneys general and regulators.  Unlike the CFPB’s prior monthly complaint  reports, the June 2017 report does not highlight complaints about one product  or complaints from consumers from one state.  Instead, the new report, which the CFPB calls a “special edition,” provides expanded data and analysis on a state-by-state basis of all complaints received by the CFPB as of April 1, 2017.  It also provides similar data on a national level for complaints from servicemembers and older consumers.

The expanded data and analysis provided for each state and the District of Columbia includes the top five products by volume, the top issue reported by consumers for each of such products, and the five products that had the greatest percentage increase in complaint volume from the last quarter of 2016 to the first quarter of 2017.  Prior complaint reports showed on a state-by-state basis the total number of complaints received by the CFPB by product and the total of all complaints received by the CFPB through the month covered by the report.  However, the new report’s approach more readily identifies the products drawing the most complaints in a particular state and recent trends in complaint volume.  Such information could result in greater scrutiny by state AGs and regulators on companies providing the products that drew the most complaints from consumers in their states or showed the greatest recent increases in complaint volume.

The report’s national statistics include the following:

  • Complaint volume rose 7 percent between 2015 and 2016 with the CFPB receiving 271,600 complaint in 2015 and 291,400 complaints in 2016.
  • Since the CFPB began accepting complaints in July 2011, companies have provided a timely response (i.e. within 15 days) to 97 percent of complaints they received from the CFPB.
  • Approximately 52 percent of the consumers who submitted complaints directly to the CFPB since 2015 have opted to have their narrative descriptions published.