Guess Who Made the BBB’s List of Top Consumer Complaints?

This entry was posted by Wednesday, 12 May, 2010
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What industry tops the Better Business Bureau’s list of consumer complaints?  If you said banks (high fees, impersonal service, mega-mergers), good guess but no.  It’s cell phones. But what industry had the biggest spike in complaints over the past year?  If you said banks, now you’re right. 

Cell phones drew the most complaints last year, 37,477, up 2.1% from 2008, according to the BBB.  Consumers registered 29,920 gripes against banks, but that’s a whopping 42.3% increase over the previous year.  None of the others (cable TV, automakers, internet retail) came close.  A “MainStreet” news posting on Yahoo Finance took note of banks’ dismal standing on the BBB consumer complaint list and advised that larger banks in particular “better beef up their customer service fast—before customers decide that the credit union down the street will treat them, and their money, with greater care.” 

Many have already come to that conclusion. CUNA figures show credit unions added 1.2 million new members in 2009.  And credit unions’ share of the household savings market has grown from 9.2% at yearend 2008 to 9.8% at the end of 2009.  That’s a pretty big leap, CUNA’s Bill Hampel points out, considering it took from 1994 to 2008 for credit unions’ savings share to get from 8.0% to 9.2%.


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