The Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments (OBSI) opened 350 investment-related cases in 2016, an increase of 17%, reveals the ombudsman’s annual report.
However, complaints related to mutual funds dropped 3%, though they remain the number one product investors complain about, representing 44% of cases. Common shares or equities represented 34% of cases, but no comparison is made to last year, nor are these cases mentioned in last year’s report.
The leading investment issues across products were:
- suitability (27%),
- suitability of margin or leverage (15%) if funds were borrowed to invest,
- incomplete or inaccurate disclosure about a product (11%) and
- fee disclosure (10%).
These issues were consistent with previous years.
The number of investment cases closed in 2016 was 333, compared to 384 in 2015. This 13% decline was largely due to the elimination of the backlog of investment cases in 2015.
Average compensation for investor complaints was $15,552, though fewer than half of investment complaints (45%) ended with monetary compensation.
Overall, investors with complaints rated the quality of service as very good or good (83%), regardless of compensation received.
For more details, as well as a list of opened cases by firm, read the full report.