The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Taskforce on Federal Consumer Financial Law has released a report with recommendations on improving consumer protection in the financial marketplace.
The Taskforce was chartered in January 2020 to study the existing legal and regulatory environment facing consumers and financial services providers. The report highlights five interrelated principles for potential systematic changes to the current legal and regulatory framework: consumer protection, information and education, competition and innovation, regulatory modernization and flexibility, and inclusion and access.
The report includes approximately 100 recommendations for the CFBP, Congress, and state and federal regulators to consider. Among the recommendations are authorizing the CFPB to issue licenses to non-depository institutions that provide lending, money transmission, and payments services; identifying competitive barriers and offering recommendations to policymakers and regulators for expanding access to the payments systems by nonbank providers; researching and developing policies to address problems of financial inclusion in rural communities; researching consumer reporting issues that arise in connection with a consumer’s bankruptcy; identifying opportunities to coordinate regulatory efforts; coordinating efforts by agencies for creating a unified regulatory regime for new and innovative technologies providing services similar to banks; and scheduling periodic assessments of the accuracy and completeness of consumer credit reports.
The Taskforce’s recommendations followed a year’s worth of engagements with external stakeholders, including consumer advocates, the CFPB’s combined advisory boards, state and federal regulators, and industry leaders. The Taskforce was chaired by Todd J. Zywicki, Professor of Law at George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School and Senior Fellow of the Cato Institute, and consisted of William MacLeod, partner at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP, and former Bureau Director at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission; Dr. J. Howard Beales III, Emeritus Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy at the George Washington University; Dr. Thomas Durkin, former Senior Economist at the Federal Reserve Board; and L. Jean Noonan, Partner at Hudson Cook.
CFPB Director Kathleen L. Kraninger welcomed the report by stating, “The Bureau is already committed to many of the recommended ideas presented in the report. The Taskforce recommendations help define and illuminate our current path.”