CFPB Opens Credit-Card Complaint Database to the Public

Simon Zhen

By , Staff Writer
Posted on Tue Jun 19, 2012, Last Updated on Wed Jul 9, 2014

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CFPB Opens Credit Card Complaint Database to the Public

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Consumers’ credit-card complaints take front stage as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) puts them online for all to see. The CFPB opened the results of its newly launched database to the public to keep the credit-card market accountable.

As of today, there are more than 130 filed complaints and the majority of them involve the largest credit-card issuers in the U.S., including American Express, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citibank and Capital One.

More than half of these complaints are about billing disputes, card interest rates, account closings and credit-card/debt protection.

The database is currently in its beta stage and displays complaints received starting on June 1, 2012.

The beta stage only shows a small portion of the complaints that the CFPB received regarding credit cards. The consumer watchdog agency logged approximately 17,000 credit-card complaints since it opened its doors on July 21, 2011.

The CFPB plans to release all credit-card complaint data in the coming months.

“Each and every time we hear from American consumers about their troublesome transactions with financial products, it gives us important insight,” CFPB Director Richard Cordray said in a prepared statement. “The information helps us and it should be available to help others too. By making our data publicly available, initially in the area of credit cards, we hope to improve the transparency and efficiency of this essential consumer market.”

Who, what, when, where

The CFPB releases complaint data including submission method, dates, ZIP code, issue, lender, lender’s response, the timeliness of responses and whether or not the consumer disputed the lender’s response.

During the complaint-filing process, each complaint is reviewed before being transferred to the lender. Lenders have 15 days to respond to the consumer and 60 days to resolve the complaint. Consumers who are unsatisfied with the resolution may open a dispute claim.

The CFPB also offers a various tools to filter and visualize the complaint database.

A heatmap shows that complaints are originating mostly from areas around New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles and northern Florida — not surprising as they are some of the most populated regions in the country.

The beta stage only shows a small portion of the complaints that the CFPB received regarding credit cards. The consumer watchdog agency logged approximately 17,000 credit-card complaints since it opened its doors on July 21, 2011.

The CFPB plans to release all credit-card complaint data in the coming months.

 

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  • jrwells5

    Finally, consumers have a true advocate in financial services. No longer will they be at a disadvantage when dealing with the big bank issuers of credit cards. They will be able to see the magnitude of banks’ ‘tricks & traps’ on other consumers. And if they are unable to rectify problems with their card issuers, they will be able to report their experiences to a regulator that may be actually be able to spot patterns of abuse. The antiseptic quality of sunlight.