What are the big stories hitting the headlines this week?

Fall

The number of payment protection insurance complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service plunged to 19,259 between July and September, compared with 56,025 the previous quarter, causing a 38% drop in total complaints to the body.

Plan

Allianz has unveiled plans to turn the European Financial Stability Facility into a bond insurance program. The German insurer says the €450bn bailout fund could be used to insure against losses by banks, insurers or sovereigns. Proposal architect Paul Achleitner said insurers and banks were behind the idea.

Theme

Biba has chosen “Shaping our Futures” as the theme for its annual conference in Manchester next May.

Price drop

The cost of motor insurance fell by 1.6% in the third quarter of 2011- the first decrease since 2008 - the latest Towers Watson/Confused.com index revealed. It also showed that annual premium inflation for the year ending September 2011 was 12.3% compared with 37.8% over the year.

Rise

BP Marsh increased the value of its assets by 4% to £48.5m in the six months to 31 July.