Investment-related complaints account for less than 1% of total in 2016 – CSN data

Maria Nikolova

Complaints related to stocks/commodity futures trading account for meager 0.03% of the total last year, data from the Consumer Sentinel Network shows.

Investment-related complaints accounted for humble 0.71% of the total of 3,050,374 complaints reported to the United States Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Network in 2016. The data comes from the agency’s new Data Book, covering the last calendar year (January 2016 – December 2016).

Investment-related complaints refer to (inter alia) investment opportunities in day trading; gold and gems; art; rare coins; other investment products; as well as complaints about companies that offer advice or seminars on investments; etc. Consumers filed 21,604 complaints related to investment products and services last year. Out of these, only 933 related to stocks/commodity futures trading, a fall from such 1,224 complaints submitted in 2015.

Looking at the overall data, let’s note that nearly 1.3 million complaints were fraud-related. Consumers reported paying more than $744 million in those fraud complaints, with the median amount paid being $450.

In total, the CSN received over 3 million complaints (excluding do-not-call) during calendar year 2016: 42% fraud complaints; 13% identity theft complaints; and 45% other types of complaints.

The small percentage of investment-related complaints as displayed by the CSN report echoes similar numbers reported in other jurisdictions. In France, for instance, the Activities Report for 2016 issued by the General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) has shown that the agency received 69,153 claims against various businesses in 2016, with a meager 3% of these concerning banking and finance. Nearly all other industries were targeted by more complaints. The French are complaining about food quality, electrical appliances, cars, property, but finance-related complaints are rare.

Talking of complaints data for 2016, let’s also mention that the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has recently published some fresh data from its Consumer Contact Center, with the report showing that binary options were the kind of investment products that registered the highest growth in enquiries for the period from December 1, 2015 to November 30, 2016. Over 13,100 enquiries (14% of total) related to investment products and binary options accounted for 17% of enquiries within investment products. Other product types where the Contact Center that accounted for a lot of the enquiries are shares (14%), Forex (13%) and bonds (10%).

Read this next

Digital Assets

Japan advances digital yen trial as PoC concluded

The Bank of Japan (BOJ) today published the findings of the second phase of its digital yen’s proof-of-concept (PoC) experiment, joining a growing number of countries seeking to catch up to front-runner China.

Digital Assets

Russia scraps proposal for government-backed crypto exchange

Russia has decided to abandon its previous plans of creating a national cryptocurrency exchange and will instead focus on developing regulations that would enable private companies to establish such exchanges.


CFI Financial onboards Elena Kupriyanova as head of marketing

CFI Financial Group has named Elena Kupriyanova as its new global head of marketing in a bid to bolster its marketing efforts and enhance its market presence.

Retail FX

Trading 212 revenue tops 2021, but bottom line disappoints

Per its filing with the UK companies house, Trading 212 UK said revenue from online trading rose to £98.7 million in the fiscal year ending December 31, 2022, up five percent compared to £94 million a year earlier.

Digital Assets

Binance to cease services for Japanese users after local launch

Binance is poised to reenter the Japanese market through the launch of a fully compliant subsidiary in the country. This development comes a few months after Binance made a fresh bid to return to the lucrative market in November 2022 with the acquisition of Japanese-registered crypto exchange service provider Sakura Exchange BitCoin (SEBC).

Digital Assets

Huobi Hong Kong offers crypto trading for retail clients

Huobi HK, a subsidiary of digital asset exchange Huobi Global, has made an announcement stating that it is now providing crypto spot trading services to both retail and institutional clients in Hong Kong.

Digital Assets

Bybit’s Strategic Leap: Navigating the Cryptocurrency Landscape in Kazakhstan

In a significant leap forward, Bybit, the globally recognized cryptocurrency exchange, has received preliminary approval from the Astana Financial Services Authority (AFSA), marking an important milestone in its strategic expansion into Kazakhstan and the wider Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) region.


Bitcoin 2023: Unlimit’s Jack Jia discusses fiat on/off ramps for crypto business

Unlimit’s expansion into the crypto space aims to bridge the gap between traditional banking networks and the rapidly evolving crypto world, facilitating seamless conversions into various digital wallets and enhancing scalability through off-chain solutions.

Digital Assets

European Systemic Risk Board warns of crypto conglomerates, leverage, DeFi, staking, lending

The report considers policy options to address risks arising from crypto conglomerates, crypto-based leverage, novel operational challenges, DeFi and crypto staking and lending.