A recent report titled “Consumer complaints throughout the credit life cycle, by demographic characteristics,” breaks down consumer complaints based on demographics. The results, always interesting to see, were not surprising. Some of the findings include:
- Complaints from wealthier communities and higher percentage white, non-Hispanic residents were mostly related to loan origination and performing servicing. Thus, complaints about how their mortgages are being handled.
- Complaints from communities of color and lower-income communities were mostly related to credit reporting, identity theft, and delinquent servicing. Credit has always been used as a sword against communities of color and this report shines a light on this practice.
- Asian American and Pacific Islander communities submitted credit reporting complaints at a significantly higher rate than predominantly white, non-Hispanic communities. But, Asian American communities also had a lower share of delinquent servicing complaints. Thus, we can see that Asian Americans are very engaged in their credit reporting experience.
- There were nearly 1 million consumer complaints filed with the CFPB between 2018 and 2020.
The report shows that a person's experience with consumer financial products varies significantly by race and wealth. The system is significantly tilted against certain classes of people and at least this report shines a light on their experiences. I am not optimistic that any of this will ever get fixed, but at least the information is out there for people to see.