The CFPB is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Congress created this government agency in 2008 as one of the reactions it took to the devastating financial crisis and Great Recession, the worst financial shocks to the system since the end of the 1930s era Great Depression.
The idea was to erect an organization that would protect consumers from risks and predatory practices of Wall Street and the mega banks which already had been determined as “too big to fail.” The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act actually set up this new entity the CFPB.
The role of this new twenty-first century organization is to assist consumers in the financial markets through creating rules that are more efficient and fair, by continuously and equitably enforcing the rules, and by helping consumers to be able to gain additional command over their own economic futures and affairs.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s goal is to ensure that the various financial markets function fairly and appropriately for providers, consumers, and the all around national economy. To this effect they strive to safeguard consumers from deceptive, predatory, abusive, and unfair activities in the marketplaces. They enforce action on any companies which break the laws. The CFPB provides people with the tools and information they require to make decisions that are smart for their own situations.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau believes in and labors towards a financial market that works fairly. This means that the terms, risks, and prices of any deals must be transparent and obvious in advance so that all consumers are able to know their choices and fairly and effectively comparison shop. They work to see that all corporations abide by the identical consumer protection rules. Each company must fairly compete to provide high quality goods and services.
To see this vision become reality, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau strives to empower, enforce, and educate. Empowering means that they develop tools, answer commonly posed queries, and offer helpful tips for consumers who are interested in making their way through the various financial options to shop around for the deal that best meets their needs. They pride themselves on their effective enforcement of the rules against predatory operations and actions that break the law.
The CFPB has obtained and returned literally billions of dollars in damages to customers who were wronged. Education means that the CFPB fosters consumer abilities and educational opportunities from a young age extending on to retirement. They inform financial companies of their legal and ethical responsibilities and publish research to help out consumers.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau operates in several core functions. They acknowledge that the government created them to offer one accountability agency to enforce the laws for federal consumer finance and to safeguard consumers in the financial arena. This used to be the purview of a number of different agencies. Among the CFPB’s core functions are receiving complaints from consumers, enforcing the discrimination laws in consumer finance, and creating and enforcing rules to rid the market of abusive, deceptive, and predatory actions by companies.
They also foster financial education among consumers, regulate and oversee the financial markets for upcoming risks for consumers, and do research on consumer’s experiences in utilizing financial services and products. They do this to try to locate problems lurking in the financial marketplace so that more fair ultimate outcomes can be achieved for American consumers everywhere.
As of 2016, Richard Cordray is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s first director. Before he assumed this important responsibility, he served in the role as head of the Bureau’s Office of Enforcement.