The report provides a view of the challenges that regulators, including the FCA, face when measuring their performance and understanding what works well for consumers.
It concluded that consumers of regulated services were “facing a number of significant difficulties, from rising bills to the impact of service failures.”
The findings suggested that regulators “face common challenges in meeting their objectives.”
The reporters stated: “They have to balance the often-competing needs of consumer and provider interests, alongside other duties covering issues such as sustainability, security of supply, or financial stability, and they often have only limited influence over outcomes.”
It added: “In the context of concerns over the ability of regulators to protect consumers it is imperative that they are clear and specific about the outcomes they are seeking to achieve and are transparent in reporting their performance.”
Andrew Bailey, chief executive at the FCA, said: “Protecting consumers is absolutely central to the FCA and where we have identified potential harm we have taken decisive action.
“Our recent work in the high-cost credit market, including implementation of the price-cap in the rent-to-own market, is just one example of this.”
He added: “Understanding the impact of our interventions is an important part of our mission to ensure that financial markets are working in consumers’ best interests.
“We will consider the National Audit Office’s recommendations when evaluating our work to protect consumers.”