Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Has Vigorous Agenda

Last month the Senate used the filibuster to prevent President Obama’s nomination to direct the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. As a result, the president installed Cordray as director by using executive power to make a recess appointment.

From the New York Times:

The new director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau outlined a vigorous oversight and enforcement agenda on Thursday, saying that financial companies that take unfair advantage of consumers would face “real consequences.”

The director, Richard Cordray, who was appointed to the post on Wednesday by President Obama, encouraged consumers to contact the agency through its Web site with complaints about banks, payday lenders and other financial institutions that they think have sold deceptive products or engaged in abusive behavior.

Finally! At last, consumers will have a place to go to make complaints about shady mortgage companies, banks, title loan companies, and payday lenders. This is great news for the bottom 99%.

The agency’s most immediate focus will be on so-called nonbank financial companies — money transfer agencies, credit bureaus and private mortgage lenders, for example — which have fallen outside the authority of most regulators, Mr. Cordray said.

That these companies have been unregulated is just not acceptable.

“Many subprime loans during the housing bubble were made by nonbank mortgage brokers,” he added. “Since most of these businesses are not used to any federal oversight, our new supervision program may be a challenge for them. But we must establish clear standards of conduct so that all financial providers play by the rules.”

That’s very diplomatically put. What he’s saying, of course, is that these companies are going to be held accountable for their actions, which is long overdue. Richard Cordray plans to move forward “promptly and vigorously” and that is good news for all of us.

People who have complaints are urged to contact the new bureau directly at www.consumerfinance.gov.