""Consumer Financial Protection Bureau"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ (CFPB) director Richard Cordray told a gathering of the nation's editors and journalists Friday that the agency needs their help to make consumers more aware of predatory lending hurdles.[IMAGE]
The chief of the consumer watchdog agency said that the bureau stands ""on the side of American consumers to protect them against illegal practices and see that they are treated fairly.
""We need you to carry our message and our mission to your readers, and we need you to continue to inform us about the nature and scope of the middle-class challenges you see in your communities every day,"" he said. ""Good government needs the[COLUMN_BREAK]
Fourth Estate. We need you to explain to us, to inform us, and to hold us accountable.""
He highlighted efforts by the CFPB to increase transparency in the markets, underscored the role undertaken by lenders in the crisis, and played up the need for more regulation for servicers.
Cordray drubbed up the middle class as a group of ""innocent bystanders"" that fell victim to ill-made mortgage products like hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage loans and interest-only loans, among others.
He also said that the CFPB would issue new rules for servicers as it moves forward, with rules for ""mortgage servicing├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬ª including disclosures, billing statements, and force-placed insurance"" under way.
""Typically, consumers do not get to choose their servicer, and mortgage servicing rights can be bought and sold without the consumer's input,"" he said. ""Servicers often ignored homeowner calls or lost the paperwork needed to consider loan modifications.""
The address by Cordray is the latest in a round of public appearances by the CFPB director, newly appointed by President Barack Obama in January amid concerns and criticism from the right flank of Capitol Hill.
Upon taking office, he reportedly made phone calls to the heads of the nation's largest lenders and servicers.