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May 22, 2013

What Is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau?

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has been in the media due to the national political climate.  Many may find themselves looking for more information about this federal agency and its role in protecting consumers.

The 2007 credit and loan crisis is often viewed as being the direct result of faulty consumer lending practices. Subsequently, many saw the need to have one centralized federal agency that focused on the protection of consumers regarding financial products and services, such as mortgages, credit cards, and student loans. In 2010, the CFPB was established by Congress through the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

The CFPB’s mission
The CFPB is charged with protecting consumers from unfavorable financial industry practices through the enforcement of federal consumer protection laws. In addition, the CFPB:

Supervises banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions
Educates consumers on how to avoid deceptive and unfair lending practices
Monitors financial industry developments
Issues regulations and guidelines for financial service providers
Collects and tracks consumer complaints in one centralized database

Recent headlines
the CFPB has taken action on a variety of consumer financial protection issues.
Some of the more high-profile headlines include:

Issuing a new mortgage rule that requires a lender to ensure a borrower’s ability to repay a mortgage loan
Releasing a report aimed at developing more affordable student loan repayment options for private student loans
Issuing a new rule that eases credit-card qualifications for stay-at-home spouses and partner

Where to get more information
For more information on how the CFPB works, visit the CFPB website at




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