CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger described agency initiatives focused on product experimentation, investigations and enforcement, and consumer education.
At the Clearing House and Bank Policy Institute Annual Conference, Ms. Kraninger emphasized the CFPB's commitment to facilitating the innovation of financial products through various means, including:
the Compliance Assistance Sandbox, which enables companies to test new financial products or services by providing a limited safe harbor from the Truth in Lending Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, and the Electronic Fund Transfer Act;
the Trial Disclosure Program, which authorizes the testing of alternative disclosures intended to increase consumer understanding; and
a revised no-action letter policy, which provides exemption from enforcement or supervisory actions for recipients concerning certain aspects of their financial product or service.
In addition, Ms. Kraninger said that it was a CFPB priority to address regulatory uncertainty around how machine learning or AI will be treated under the existing regulatory framework. She provided examples where the use of AI results in a denial of credit decision and the requirement that such decisions be explained to those denied credit.
Ms. Kraninger stated that the CFPB is revising Civil Investigative Demands (or "CIDs") and consent orders to more accurately reflect underlying activity. She noted that the CFPB's policy on the termination of consent orders is being reviewed to determine how to maintain compliance while ensuring that orders are effective only as long as necessary to reach the intended goal.
Ms. Kraninger called for a clearer definition of the term "unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices" under Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act. Ms. Kraninger stated that uncertainty related to the term ultimately hurts both the marketplace and consumers.
To facilitate financial well-being for consumers, Ms. Kraninger cited the CFPB's "Start Small, Save Up" initiative, which works with communities, employers, federal financial regulators and institutions to help Americans build up their savings.