CFPB & Congress

  • Semi-annual report: On June 4th, the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee announced that it will hold a June 10th hearing on the CFPB’s semi-annual report, which the CFPB published on May 28th (previously reported).  The sole scheduled witness is Director Cordray.
  • Student debt: On June 4th, CFPB Assistant Director and Student Loan Ombudsman Rohit Chopra testified before the Senate Budget Committee at a hearing entitled, “The Impact of Student Loan Debt on Borrowers and the Economy.”  Chopra described how the nation’s $1.2 trillion in student loan debt restricts demand in many important segments of the economy.  He called for greater accountability for student loan servicers, reviewed the CFPB’s allegations against Sallie Mae and Navient that culminated in regulators’ May 13th settlement, and noted that the CFPB recently finalized its larger participant rule for nonbank student loan servicers.  Chopra reiterated the CFPB’s interest in a uniform framework for restructuring private student loans, and stated that the CFPB is coordinating with other regulators to enhance the quality of data on borrower populations, including loan usage and employment patterns.  Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA) called on Congress to pass legislation similar to the, “Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act” (S. 2292, pending in the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee’s Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection).
  • CFPB reform: On June 5th, the House Financial Services Committee announced that, on June 10th, the full Committee will hold its previously postponed markup of the following CFPB reform bills:
    • H.R. 2629, the “Fostering Innovation Act of 2013”;
    • H.R. 3389, the “CFPB Slush Fund Elimination Act of 2013”;
    • H.R. 3770, the “CFPB-Inspector General Reform (CFPB-IG) Act of 2013”;
    • H.R. 4262, the “[CFPB] Advisory Commission Transparency Act”;
    • H.R. 4383, the “[CFPB] Small Business Advisory Board Act”;
    • H.R. 4387, the “[FSOC] Transparency and Accountability Act”;
    • H.R. 4539, the “[CFPB] Research Transparency Act”;
    • H.R. 4604, the “CFPB Data Collection Security Act”; and
    • H.R. 4662, the “[CFPB] Advisory Opinion Act.

CFPB Operations

  • Mobile financial services: On June 3rd, the CFPB announced a June 12th field hearing in New Orleans (LA) regarding mobile financial services.  The CFPB will hear comments from representatives of consumer groups and industry, as well as from members of the public. Director Cordray is scheduled to deliver prepared remarks, and the CFPB’s website is expected to provide a live webcast on its website.
  • FTC cooperation: On June 3rd, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it provided to the CFPB, at the CFPB’s request, summaries of FTC enforcement and related activities in 2013 regarding the Truth in Lending Act, the Consumer Leasing Act, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.  The FTC stated that it and the CFPB, “generally have shared jurisdiction of these statutes, and coordinate their activities accordingly.”  The CFPB had requested the information for inclusion in its annual report to Congress.