CFPB Issues New Strategic Plan, Drawing Criticism from Consumers Union

by Jeff Sovern

The CFPB issued a new strategic plan. I haven't had time to go through it myself, but Consumers Union is unhappy with it. Here's a quote from the CU statement:

[The plan] signals that [the CFPB] will ease up on enforcement and investigations of the financial industry and identifies deregulation as a top priority.  The new plan represents a major overhaul of the CFPB’s mission and operations and will undermine its ability to protect consumers, according to Consumers Union, the advocacy division of Consumer Reports.   

“The CFPB’s new strategic plan effectively muzzles the consumer watchdog,” said Anna Laitin, Director of Financial Policy for Consumers Union.  * * *

And here's Yuka Hayashi's take, writing in the WSJ:

Under the new plan, the No.1 goal for the bureau is to ensure that “all consumers have access to markets for consumer financial products and services.” In the previous plan published in 2013, the priority was to “prevent financial harm to consumers while promoting good practices that benefit them.”

The new vision seeks “Free, innovative, competitive, and transparent consumer finance markets where the rights of all parties are protected by the rule of law.” That contrasts with the previous vision for an agency “that helps consumers finance markets work by making rules more effective, by consistently and fairly enforcing those rules, and by empowering consumers to take more control over their economic lives.”


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