17 October 2017
It’s happening without most of us knowing it: lending firms are increasingly relying on masses of data about us, the potential customers, to decide whether we’re creditworthy or a risk. The result is a growing risk that consumers find themselves locked out of certain financial services, or that a link is drawn between a consumer’s ability to pay more and higher prices.
20 September 2017
The European Commission has today proposed a weak reform of the agencies that supervise financial services at European level. It is bewildering that the proposal still limits the agencies’ role in protecting consumers, which is mostly devolved to national level where protection standards vary enormously. The reform means the agencies will continue to subordinate consumer protection to considerations about the stability of the financial sector.
04 August 2017
We are delighted to announce our conference on Big data and fintech on 17 October at CEPS, Place du Congrès 1, 1000-Brussels. This full-day event is co-organised by BEUC, EFIN and ECRI. The conference will explore, from the perspective of financial inclusion, the potential risks and benefits of big data and fintech for citizens.
Our work areas
Across the EU, consumers are left with serious concerns about the future of their personal deposits and savings, loans and pensions – a problem aggravated by the economic crisis. This same crisis has shown that financial supervision authorities were not capable of detecting the risks of evermore complex products accurately and adopting the necessary measures to avoid this crisis. Therefore, it is essential to restore consumer confidence, and protect all European consumers at national and cross-border level.
Another concern in this context is the availability and accessibility of financial services along with the need to tackle financial exclusion.
An Internal Market of financial services does not exist yet - it is still nearly impossible to open a current account or a simple savings account in another Member State if not resident there. Even if there are major differences in interest rates between Member States from which consumers could benefit, it is almost impossible to obtain credit in another Member State.
Finally, consumer choice in the area of financial services is impeded both by a clear lack of independent advice on financial services and complex and not comparable pre-contractual information.
If you want to discover how EU laws protect consumers in this area, don’t miss the Consumer Champion Financial Services e-learning course.
- Strengthen regulation and supervision for retail financial services
- Decrease financial exclusion and guarantee the right of consumers to have access to basic banking services
- Make essential payment services efficient, fair, affordable and secure
- Ensure information on financial services is easy to understand and comparable – also across borders – and that advice on financial services is affordable and reliable
- Advocate for financial services suitable for those who buy them