U.K. banks may face more claims for wrongly sold insurance as the country’s markets cop steps up an informational campaign featuring an animatronic head of Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Misleading some customers in selling as many as 64 million payment protection insurance policies has cost Britain’s banks dearly. More than 29 billion pounds ($40.7 billion) has been paid back to customers who complained, according to the Financial Conduct Authority. Lloyds Banking Group Plc alone has set aside 18.7 billion pounds for claims.
In a new television spot that airs on Wednesday, the “Terminator” star’s disembodied head, mounted on a remote-control car with tank treads, urges people waiting at a bus stop to make up their minds about filing a PPI claim before the deadline of Aug. 29, 2019. Since a first advertisement ran last August, the FCA has received about 17,000 calls to its helpline, and 900,000 people have visited its website for information.
“Since we launched our campaign, the largest firms have told us that the proportion of people complaining to them directly has increased,” FCA Chief Executive Officer Andrew Bailey said in a statement. “This may in part be due to the improvements we asked firms to make to their complaint-handling processes.”
Lloyds isn’t the only lender feeling the pinch. Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc has made provisions of 5.1 billion pounds for PPI claims, according to its 2017 annual report. Barclays Plc had recognized cumulative provisions against PPI claims totaling 9.2 billion pounds as of Dec. 31, its annual report shows.
The FCA said PPI was sold with a range of products, such as car finance, catalog credit, credit cards and mortgages. The ads will run on television, radio, social media, video on demand and outdoor advertising, including at bus stops.
Schwarzenegger, 70, is on the mend after the former Mr. Olympia and actor underwent heart surgery, according to reports this week. “It’s true: I’m back!” he wrote on his profile on Twitter on Monday, thanking his team of doctors and nurses after the operation.
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