PwC-HSBC arm probes flawed insurance sales

A subsidiary of HSBC, the high street bank, is working with
PricewaterhouseCoopers to
contact more than 160,000 customers who bought its payment protection insurance
(PPI) products, to establish whether they had been disadvantaged by the

HFC Bank, which operates in the UK under the names
Bank and Beneficial Finance
, was yesterday hit with a record £1m fine after
the city watchdog uncovered a series of flaws in the bank’s insurance sales.

HFC Bank sold PPI to more than 160,000 people between January 2005 and
December 2007 without checking whether customers needed the cover. The bank also
failed to keep proper records of its PPI sales, did not investigate possible
cases of mis-selling and lacked a system which would have allowed senior
managers to monitor the sales of PPI.

The bonuses paid to HFC’s sales staff, worth up to 25% of their salaries,
were heavily reliant on how much PPI they sold. Most of HFC’s customers had
impaired or non-existent credit histories so could not get finance elsewhere.

Further reading:

HMRC loses data for 25 million people

story in The Times

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