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PPI is officially annoying, yet banks spent £42.2m on ads

A LIGHTHEARTED survey about our reactions to telemarketers has revealed that sales calls urging us to claim compensation for mis-sold Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) are the ones which gets on our nerves the most. The release of the research is timely, as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) have imposed a deadline of August 29, 2019 for compensation claims to be filed.

Star Arnold Schwarzenegger is currently fronting a campaign for the FCA to warn people about the deadline, which has cost £42.2million to execute. The advert itself cost £30million to produce. The remaining £12.2million was spent on associated costs, including a PPI helpline. The hefty price tag was shared amongst 18 financial institutions, including banks and building societies, which received the most complaints about mis-selling.

Despite the amount of money that has gone into making-up for the PPI debacle, we all know that cold callers are generally an unwelcome intrusion. However, wired and wireless telephone headset provider carried out a survey to find out more about why we get so irate when receiving these calls.

The survey found that, on average, 66.5% of the UK puts the phone down on someone trying to sell them something. The people with the least patience in the UK and Ireland seem to be the Irish – a whopping 77% of them said they will immediately hang up on a conversation about double glazing or insurance. As for England, it’s the East Midlanders who are least tolerant - almost 70% of them leave their callers in the cold with the sound of the dial tone. Over a third of South Easterners (37%), meanwhile, say they wouldn’t hang-up on a stranger who called them out of the blue to discuss something like mobile phone tariffs.

When it comes to the topic of conversation, phone deals are apparently one of the least irritating – only 7.3% of people said that was the type of call they had the least patience for. The biggest bugbear, for over a third of us (38.9%) is people trying to help you recover PPI refunds. Perhaps surprisingly, or perhaps because it jogs people’s memory to actually do something about it, pensions is the least irritating topic, with only 1.9% of us finding them excruciating.

While the majority of us don’t actually feel sorry for cold callers, just over a quarter of us (25.8%) do actually understand that it’s just a job, and they’re only doing what they’ve been asked to.

"It's a tough job, being a cold caller, but someone's got to do it", says David Whitehead from

"They're almost like unsung heroes, really! So give these guys a break next time you get a call and you never know – you might get a really good deal on your next mobile phone tariff."


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