CFPB Lacks a Process to Prioritize Financial Risks to Consumers

Dec 31, 2018 | Federal Regulation, News

In its first financial technology report released last week, the United States Government of Accountability (GAO) said that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) does not have a process to prioritize work based on the risk to consumers.

GAO pointed out that the Bureau fails to utilize market data and other sources such as consumer complaints and market intelligence from external groups. While the CFPB does use the aforementioned data and sources to inform their rulemakings, supervision, and other functions, they have yet to decide if they will use it to process and prioritize financial risks.

“The Director of CFPB should implement a systematic process for prioritizing risks to consumers and considering how to use the bureau’s available policy tools—such as rulemaking, supervision, enforcement, and consumer education—to address these risks,” the report stated.

Also mentioned was that while the CFPB does have a systematic process, implemented in 2015, it has not been utilized in recent years.

GAO noted that, “Implementing a bureau-wide prioritization process could help to ensure that CFPB effectively focuses its resources on the most significant financial risks to consumers and enhances its ability to meet its statutory consumer protection objectives.”

The CFPB has not taken any actions relating to the report since it was released. However, in a response attached to the GAO report, CFPB Acting Deputy Director Brian Johnson said that the Bureau recognizes the importance of having a process in place.

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