How Monzo and Starling’s complaints data stacks up against incumbents

By Daniel Lanyon on Monday 27 April 2020

Digital Banking

The UK financial regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has released firm-specific data for complaints, reported by banks, including two banking fintechs.

How Monzo and Starling’s complaints data stacks up against incumbents
Image source: Photo by picjumbo.com from Pexels

Digital banks such as Monzo and Starling have legions of fans and a strong reputation for customer satisfaction but with stellar growth so too comes a growing number of less than satisfied customers. 

The UK financial regulator the Financial Conduct Authority  (FCA) has released firm-specific data for complaints, reported by firms, for the second half of the last year providing granular incite on customer experience of financial services. It makes for interesting reading.

In the sixth months to the end of 2019, Monzo saw 11,451 complaints while Starling Bank saw 2,119.  How best to interpret these figures? First off these are vastly lower than incumbents. 

Barclays led the table of large retail banks for general banking credit cards with complaints nearly 100 times higher in number than Starling, for example, at 215k while HSBC saw 206k complaints. 

Also, it is worth stating Monzo and Starling (the only two neo banks in data) have a different number of customers to each other. Both firms reported numbers of users broadly at a midpoint of the second half of 2020. Monzo said it had 3 million customers in September 2019 and Starling said it had 1 million customers in October 2019.

Monzo, therefore, had a higher rate of complaints compared with Starling having three times the number of customers last year but with nearly five times the number of aggregate complaints.

It is also worth noting that from these aggregate numbers Monzo upheld 52 per cent of the total number while Starling upheld just 23 per cent.

Monzo declined to comment for this article.

The likes of Co-op Bank, which has 1.4 million current account holders saw 14,309 customer complaints.

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