The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Measuring the Progress of a New Agency


In This Issue:

Executive Summary; Introduction; Focus of Consumer Protection Task Force; History of the CFPB; Rule-Making; Examinations and Data; Consumer Relations; The Scope of CFPB Authority; Transparency; CFPB Funding and Accountability; Metrics; Conclusion; Appendix A: List of Abbreviations; Appendix B: Outreach Interview Form; Appendix C: List of New Authorities; Appendix D: List of Select CFPB Public Hearings; and Endnotes.

Excerpt from Executive Summary -

For almost a year, the Financial Regulatory Reform Initiative’s Consumer Protection Task Force has conducted an in-depth review and analysis of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB, or Bureau). The mandate of this new agency is to ensure consumer financial products and services and the markets for those products and services are fair, transparent, and competitive. This paper measures the agency’s actions against its mandate. It analyzes the start-up and operational challenges the Bureau has faced and the critical choices it has made. Throughout this process, the Task Force met with leading consumer advocates, federal and state bank regulators and their staffs, and regulated industry participants in the bank and nonbank space. The Task Force also met with staff of the CFPB itself. To guide its work and to ensure consistency, the Task Force developed a common set of questions for each interview, which may be found in Appendix B. This paper draws on those interviews, the Task Force’s own experiences, and a careful analysis of the actions and stated goals of the Bureau to examine the CFPB’s activities and performance.

Originally published in Bipartisan Policy Center on September 24, 2013.

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