A watchdog grows up: The inside story of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

This week, the Washington Post published a story on the evolution of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a federal agency charged with overseeing various financial service providers, including payday lenders. The article discussed a range of political conflicts that have plagued the agency since its creation, specifically examining an internal clash of philosophies over rulemaking and enforcement actions. Leonard Chanin, a former official for rulemaking at the CFPB, described his tenure at the agency:

"'I lost faith that the agency would become a truly independent entity and carefully balance consumer costs and access to credit with consumer protection,' Chanin said. He offered the example of payday loans. "I think the bureau sees consumers taking out payday loans and believes 'there must be something wrong here, because consumers really wouldn’t choose these products.' There is great risk in assuming you know what is best for the consumer.'"

Click here to read the full article.


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