The Least Trusted Financial Institutions

Baby boomers are more suspicious of investment firms than their children.


Financial institutions have been accused of not being there for their customers in the wake of the financial crisis. Less than 5 percent of Americans say they find statements made by a spokesperson for a financial company completely believable. Credit card, mortgage, and health insurance companies are among the least trusted financial institutions. But consumers also say they are mistrustful of the government agencies tasked with regulating financial companies. Here’s a look at the least trusted financial institutions.

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Credit card companies. Credit card companies are perceived to be the least trustworthy financial firms among all age groups, according to a recent Harris Poll of 2,755 adults. Democrats (70 percent) and Independents (66 percent) are more likely than Republicans (56 percent) to say they do not find any statements by credit card companies believable.

Mortgage companies. Mistrust of mortgage companies appears to increase with age. While 39 percent of young Americans find mortgage companies untrustworthy, that percentage gradually increases to 58 percent among seniors.

Health insurance companies. Members of Generation X (52 percent) and Baby Boomers (54 percent) are the most skeptical of statements made by their health insurance company. Younger people and seniors who have reached Medicare’s eligibility age are more likely to find their health insurance company trustworthy.

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Government regulators. Young Americans between ages 18 and 33 (65 percent) and Democrats (60 percent) largely say they find the statements made by government agencies that regulate financial institutions to be believable. Trust of government regulators is lowest among Republicans (35 percent) and retirees age 65 and older (36 percent).

Investment firms. Young adults under age 33 (64 percent) and Republicans (62 percent) stand out as the two groups with large majorities who still have faith in investment firms. Only about half of other age groups and political persuasions find investment firms trustworthy.

Banks. The majority of Americans (62 percent) including those of all age groups and political affiliations say they find statements from their bank believable.

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Accounting firms. Accounting firms were rated the most trustworthy financial institution in the survey with 67 percent of Americans trusting an accounting firm’s analysis.