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Tag Archives: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

A Better Title for National Consumer Protection Week: National Consumer EMPOWERMENT Week

Posted in Consumer Protection

This week, March 3rd – 9th, is the fifteenth annual National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW).  Yes, it is an important time to spread awareness of common scams and problems that consumers encounter.  But more importantly, it is an opportunity for us to reflect on what exactly “consumer protection” means. The White House issued a Presidential… Continue Reading

College Students, Protect Your Rights: the CFPB’s Latest Area of Interest

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

College students are not a group that immediately comes to mind when we think of “vulnerable” populations but once you start looking at their circumstances it becomes clear: college students need help.  Financial control is likely new to most students, it might even be the first time many students pay a bill on their own…. Continue Reading

CFPB Brings Practical, Well-Informed Balance to Lending Rules

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Last week, the CFPB issued “one of our most important rules to date, the Ability-to-Repay rule.”  While the rule itself is a good step forward for consumers, what I found most interesting is the analysis of a financial market that was “reckless about lending money.”  The CFPB has always taken a very practical approach that… Continue Reading

When One Door Closes Another Door Opens: Congratulations Senator Elizabeth Warren

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

There are many great things that can be said about Senator Warren’s victory: she is the first woman to be elected U.S.  Senator from Massachusetts; she symbolizes the American dream (her father was a janitor and she worked as a waitress); and for Democrats, her victory eliminated the possibility of a Republican controlled Senate.  But… Continue Reading

Deceptive Sales Tactics From Yet Another Big Name Financial Institution

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

I am starting to see a trend… and for once it’s a good one.  First, we saw Capital One forced to repay customers after using deceptive sales techniques.  Last week, Discover was fined for deceptive telemarketing.  This time, the culprit is American Express, whose offense is — surprise,   surprise — more deceptive sales tactics (not… Continue Reading

Consumer Advisory Board: First Meeting Shows Promise

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Last week, the CFPB held the inaugural meeting of its consumer advisory board in St. Louis, Missouri.  Director Richard Cordray began the meeting with prepared remarks stressing the CFPB’s public focus.  He reminded us that the CFPB’s close relationship with consumers is what makes it work, citing the CFPB’s consumer complaint submission form and hundreds… Continue Reading

CFPB “Cooperating” With Other Agencies in its Consumer Complaint Portal

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Yesterday, Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”), appeared before the House Committee on Financial Services to summarize and respond to questions on the CFPB’s semi-annual report, released on July 30th and available here.  Cordray took a calm and measured approach to presenting the CFPB’s work thus far.  He highlighted the substantive… Continue Reading

Turning Independence On Its Head: Proposed Bill S. 3468 Would Paralyze the CFPB, the SEC, the EPA …

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Moderate and respected  Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), Mark Warner (D-VA), and Susan Collins (R-ME) issued a press release on August 1st describing their proposed bill S. 3468, the “Independent Agency Regulatory Analysis Act of 2012.”  For all intents and purposes the bill seeks to take the “independence” out of “Independent Regulatory Agencies”.  That’s right.  Who… Continue Reading

CFPB Reports May Give Consumers a Louder Voice

Posted in Consumer Protection

The CFPB is back at it.  The agency released a report that examines the consumer complaints they’ve received about mortgage companies.  The report, which evaluates the more than 23,000 complaints submitted in the last six months, reveals that the largest number of complaints are about—surprise, surprise!—difficulties encountered by consumers who are unable to make a… Continue Reading

CFPB’s First Enforcement Action: Capital One, Its Time to Pay Your Customers Back

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Until today my praise for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has been in response to their “softer” programs.  I thought their solicitation of complaints and comments from the public was promising, their making that data available to the public useful (especially their interactive database on credit card complaints that revealed-surprise surprise-Capital One to be the… Continue Reading

Doubling the Attention: How CFPB Complaints Shed Light on Common Problems

Posted in Consumer Protection

Last week I wrote about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s online complaint submission procedure and the implications it has when you consider that, these days, “knowledge is power.” This time I’m going to focus on a similar, parallel method of gathering information the CFPB has now used twice: soliciting comments from the public. Notice and… Continue Reading

CFPB Soliciting Complaints to Help Shape Regulations: A for Effort, D for Execution

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection, Whistleblowers

If knowledge is power, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) could be on track to be very, very powerful. The CFPB began accepting online consumer complaints about credit card companies in July of 2011. Then, in December of 2011, it added mortgage complaints. This past March, it expanded its complaint process to include those about… Continue Reading

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Makes Consumer Complaint Database to be Available to the Public: Industry Begin Whining… Now

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Today is a rare day.  Like my basement dwelling Chicago Cubs, consumers might be able get a “win” on the books.  The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced a “major step forward in our work to protect consumers.”  For the first time, the CFPB will allow full access to its individual-level consumer complaint database.  And… Continue Reading

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Folds in the Face of Pressure from Credit Card Companies (Premier Bank): Say it Ain’t So

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was at the heart of the Dodd-Frank reforms.  It was not too long ago that if you whispered the initials “C” “F” “P” “B” to leaders of banks and other financial institutions they would turn ashen-faced and fall into a cold sweat.  They bemoaned what they called the “unlimited” power… Continue Reading

“Ask CFPB” – The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Provides Helpful Tool

Posted in Consumer Protection

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has launched a new tool called Ask CFPB to help answer financial questions consumers might have. Right now more than 350 entries are available on topics like credit cards and mortgages. As this tool takes off, the Bureau hopes to expand the list of topics to cover student loans, auto loans, checking and savings accounts. You want it, they have it.

Regulating Credit Reporting Agencies and Debt Collectors: Richard Cordray and the CFPB Establish Some of Their Territory

Posted in Consumer Protection

Valuable to many and a safety net to millions more, predatory loans are around to stay. But good news: Our new friends at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau–for the first time–will be taking a good hard look at what is legalized “loan sharking” and put a national enforcement strategy together for policing these practices.