§ Mr. Clifton-Brown
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many cases were considered by the Banking Ombudsman in the last year for which figures are available; how many cases were(a) upheld and (b) rejected; what was the average time taken to consider cases; and what the average cost was per case. 
§ Ruth Kelly
The Financial Ombudsman Service tell me that in the financial year ending 31 March 2000, the Office of the Banking Ombudsman received a total of 4,375 cases.34W
The table shows a breakdown of the outcome of all cases resolved during the period:
Breakdown of cases—year ended 31 March 2000 Outcome of cases Percentage Resolved by mediation or conciliation 66 Resolved after investigation by an adjudicator
20 In favour of the consumer 50 In favour of the firm 50 Resolved by final decision of an ombudsman
14 In favour of the consumer 50 In favour of the firm 50
The average time taken to resolve cases in the year ending 31 March 2000 was 162 days.
The unit cost per case (calculated by dividing the total expenditure—less financing costs by the number of cases closed) for the year ending 31 March 2000 was £730, the average unit cost per cases across all of the predecessor schemes.