Lloyds Banking Group received almost 1.4 million complaints about mis-sold payment protection insurance in 2012, it has admitted. The bank was fined £4.3m last week after it failed to pay compensation quickly enough to tens of thousands of PPI victims, yet it declared it has made "significant progress" on dealing with customer complaints.
Last week's fine by the Financial Services Authority related to more than 140,000 Lloyds customers who were told they were due compensation by the bank between May 2011 and March 2012 but were not paid within the 28 days the bank had promised.
The partly state-owned bank revealed figures relating to its customer complaints for the second half of last year. It reported that, while it attracted more than 727,000 PPI complaints in the first half of 2012, the figure fell 9 per cent to 658,289 in the second half.
The group received 762,014 complaints about its Bank of Scotland, Halifax and Lloyds TSB brands. It pointed out that banking complaints fell by a quarter from the first half of the year, to 71,258. Martin Dodd, the group customer service director, said: "Over the last three years, the number of banking complaints we receive has dropped considerably."
He said the bank should be judged on the number of complaints received per 1,000 customers. On that basis, the group received fewer complaints than any other major bank, even though it attracted the highest actual number of complaints.
At the end of 2010, the group received 2.1 complaints per thousand customers, which fell to 1.5 at the end of 2011 and to 1.1 by the close of 2012.
"By the end of this year, we aim to reduce the number of complaints to no more than one for every 1,000 accounts," Mr Dodd said.