- Marketing: On September 3rd, the CFPB published a bulletin cautioning credit card companies against deceptively marketing interest-rate promotions. In a press release, CFPB Director Richard Cordray warned, “Credit card offers that lure in consumers and then hit them with surprise charges are against the law.” The bulletin reflects the CFPB’s perspective that certain interest-rate promotions are deceptive, “if the marketing materials do not clearly and prominently convey that a consumer who accepts such an offer and continues to use the credit card to make purchases will lose the grace period on the new purchases if the consumer does not pay the entire statement balance, including the amount subject to the promotional APR, by the payment due date.” The bulletin also states that a credit card issuer may be considered to engage in abusive conduct if it, “fails to adequately alert consumers to this relationship.” In addition to the bulletin, the CFPB published consumer tips about grace periods and credit card interest-rate promotions.
- Mortgages: On August 29th, the CFPB published in the Federal Register (79 FR 51732) a proposed rule amending Regulation C in order to implement amendments to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) regarding additional and modified reporting requirements. Specifically, the CFPB proposes to expand HMDA reporting categories to include an applicant’s age and credit score, the value of the property, the total points and fees charged in connection with the loan, the term to maturity, and the loan’s duration. Public comments on the proposed rule are being accepted through October 29th.
- Consumer Advisory Board: On September 3rd, the CFPB announced that it will hold a Consumer Advisory Board meeting on September 11th in Washington, D.C., on, “trends and themes related to technology and access to financial services.” The event will feature remarks by Cordray, and will be recorded for the public.
- Financial literacy: On September 4th, the CFPB published a notice and request for comment in the Federal Register (79 FR 52638) on a proposed information collection entitled, “Financial Coaching Program for Veterans and Low-income Consumers.” The CFPB proposes to conduct a program providing financial coaching to transitioning veterans and economically vulnerable consumers, and proposes to collect information to be used in the program including self-reported survey data from program participants. Public comments on the information collection are being accepted through November 3rd.
- Student loans: On September 3rd, the CFPB published a blog post highlighting one college graduate’s experience with repaying student loans. The student, “Leah,” used the CFPB’s Paying for College tool to learn about the Income Based Repayment option, which she credits with helping lower her monthly payments. In a video embedded in the blog post, Leah encourages other students and recent graduates to address their student loan debt using tools from the CFPB. In the post, the CFPB solicits related stories from consumers about student loans.