Tuesday, June 19, 2012

CFPB launches credit card complaint database

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has launched a beta version of a credit card complaint database that has drawn the ire of the banking industry but promises to give consumers a better idea of what gripes people have with their plastic.

The data set contains only the 137 complaints the bureau has received since June 1, though it expects to expand it to previous complaints by the end of the summer. The database names the bank involved but does not give identifying information on the complainant beyond his or her zip code.

That's been unpopular with the banking industry, which sought to water down the proposal.

"While our industry stands ready to work with the CFPB to resolve customer concerns, the Bureau’s plan to release unverified data is disappointing and could mislead consumers," the American Bankers Association said in a statement. "Publishing allegations is often different than publishing facts."

Three of the complaints so far have been from North Carolina, two from Charlotte. Of North Carolina's complaints, two were with JPMorgan Chase over interest rates, and one with Bank of America about a billing dispute. Two of them led to the customer getting "monetary relief."

Some visualizations of the data (click the chart title to see a larger version):