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CFPB moves from rulemaking to enforcement, outreach efforts

cfpbAs debate over the agency director’s nomination continues in Washington, the CFPB has largely pushed through its Dodd-Frank mandated rulemakings and has begun to focus on its supervision and outreach efforts.

The agency released seven mortgage rules in January and has started to ramp up its oversight of the financial industry, including payday and auto lenders, debt collection and credit reporting agencies and student loan lenders, Politico reports.

While some lawmakers and other industry participants have called on the agency to discuss its plans for 2013, the CFPB’s agenda has largely remained undisclosed.

“It’s fairly difficult to figure out exactly where the CFPB is headed,” Jess Sharp, the executive director of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness, said, adding that while the agency appears to be exploring a number of options, “they’re not tipping their hand or they’re not sure what else they’re doing in 2013,” according to Politico.

The CFPB has not yet taken action on several of its indicated interests, but agency officials said that it is still in the process of data-collection related to the issues. While groups like the Credit Union National Association have opposed some of the agency’s rules, it said that the regulator has been open in its rulemaking process.

“If you take a poll of credit unions and ask whether they’d like to deal with one more agency in addition to the other regulators, I’m sure they’d say one is enough,” Eric Richard, CUNA’s executive vice president and general counsel, said, Politico reports. “But given that the CFPB is here to stay, we’re very pleased by their efforts to be sensitive to our concerns.”

The CFPB is currently seeking comment on how to make private student loans more affordable, but Rohit Chopra, the CFPB’s student loan ombudsman, said that the agency is not specifically looking for models.

“We have to realize that collecting information from interested parties is so much easier now,” Chopra said, according to Politico. “We use our website, we use digital tools to reach people, and it’s beyond just having, you know, a small group of people who read the Federal Register be engaged with us.”

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