Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

Consumer complaints to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rose 31% in the first five months of 2020, compared with the same period last year, with many complaints specifically mentioning the coronavirus pandemic.

The state of play: Through May 31, the CFPB received 142,782 complaints, according to an analysis of the bureau's records by NerdWallet.

What it means: "The CFPB relays consumer complaints about loans, credit cards, bank accounts and other financial products to financial institutions."

  • "Among 2020 complaints explicitly mentioning 'covid' or related terms, 'struggling to pay mortgage' was the top issue."

Why it matters: The study suggests the lower-than-expected number of Americans taking advantage of mortgage forbearance and other financial hardship programs may be due to a lack of knowledge rather than a lack of interest.

Watch this space: Nearly 15 million credit cards and 3 million auto loans were placed in financial hardship programs in April and 8.6% of mortgage holders were in forbearance as of June 15.

  • Those numbers are both much higher than in previous months, but well below the expectations of economists, given the extreme job losses since March.
  • A Fannie Mae national housing survey in May found that only half of mortgage holders and a third of renters were aware of relief programs.

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Bill Clinton slams McConnell and Trump: "Their first value is power"

Former President Bill Clinton on Sunday called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's (R-Ky.) vow to fill Ruth Bader Ginsburg's vacant Supreme Court seat before the next presidential inauguration "superficially hypocritical."

The big picture: Clinton, who nominated Ginsburg to the court in 1993, declined to say whether he thinks Democrats should respond by adding more justices if they take back the Senate and the White House in November. Instead, he called on Republicans to "remember the example Abraham Lincoln set" by not confirming a justice in an election year.

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