A hearing of the House Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and monetary policy was the venue for the American Financial Services Association (AFSA) recent testimony. AFSA CEO Bill Himpler raised serious concerns about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s “unhelpful rhetoric” and its refusal to operate within its congressional mandate.
The hearing, entitled “Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Ripe for Reform”, heard Mr. Himpler identify five key areas of concern:
The CFPB seeks to impose limits on arbitration, despite Congress overturning its arbitration rule and the Bureau’s own study showing that arbitration benefits consumers.
The CFPB’s “press releases over rules” approach means consumers remain struggling.
Regulation by press release can have serious consequences for consumers.
The CFPB is using regulation by enforcement to create back-door changes for the decades-old Truth in Lending Act (TILA) with little concern for harm to consumers.
The CFPB’s misinterpretation of the Military Lending Act (MLA) would harm servicemembers.
He finished his testimony by summarizing AFSA’s concerns:
“Transparency and accountability are crucial to ensuring lending institutions maintain and grow access to credit for American households. Without understanding the expectations of regulators, creditors will seek to limit risk and tighten access to credit, thus increasing costs for borrowers, threatening a well-functioning consumer credit marketplace and the worthy goal of economic opportunity for all.”
SOURCE: American Financial Services Association