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BUSINESS
July 27, 2011 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
Elizabeth Warren, the Harvard law professor who has organized the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, will step down as advisor to the Obama administration Monday and be replaced as de facto acting director by a top aide, the Treasury Department announced. Raj Date, who serves as the agency's associate director of research, markets and regulations, will become a special advisor to Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and run the bureau's daily operations until a director is confirmed.
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BUSINESS
July 16, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera
WASHINGTON - The nation's consumer watchdog for credit cards, mortgages and other financial products is set to emerge from a legal cloud that threatened its authority after a Senate deal paved the way for confirmation of its director. After Tuesday's approval of Richard Cordray to a five-year term as the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the young agency now has the certainty that it has lacked since being created as the centerpiece of the 2010 Wall Street reform law. That means that bureau rules and enforcement actions designed to protect consumers from risky mortgages, misleading credit card marketing, abusive debt collection and other questionable financial practices won't be in danger of being overturned because of legal questions about Cordray's controversial recess appointment in 2012.
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BUSINESS
August 21, 2012 | By David Lazarus
If you can't beat 'em, drown 'em in petty attacks. Conservatives fought long and hard to block creation of a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which the Obama administration said was needed to safeguard people from abusive credit card and mortgage lenders. Now that the watchdog agency is up and running, conservatives have found a new line of attack: How the bureau spends its money . Judicial Watch, a conservative foundation, says the agency has been spending a surprising amount of taxpayer money on -- oh my God!
BUSINESS
April 29, 2013 | David Lazarus
A growing number of Indian tribes are getting into the payday loan business, saying they just want to raise revenue for their reservations while helping cash-strapped consumers nationwide. But federal officials suspect that, at least in some cases, tribes are being paid to offer their sovereign immunity to non-Indian payday lenders that are trying to dodge state regulations. So far, the tribes have prevailed over California and other states that have tried to assert authority over tribal lending operations.
BUSINESS
December 8, 2011 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau unveiled its proposal for a simplified credit card agreement form designed to make it easier for consumers to understand interest rate terms and comparison shop. "Credit cards can be complicated, with many moving parts that impact the cost to consumers," Raj Date, the agency's acting director, said at a Cleveland news conference Wednesday. "When a consumer has to read through pages of legal fine print in their credit card agreement to figure out how their card works, it's easy to get confused," he said.
BUSINESS
April 19, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Older Americans can be confused by dozens of special designations for financial advisors for seniors, and government officials should set strict standards for training and conduct to prevent abuses, according to a new federal report. The ranks of the elderly are projected grow to 70 million by 2030 from 50 million now, and their savings can be an attractive target for people peddling financial products, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said. The bureau, at the request of Congress, studied how advisors to seniors can promote, or designate, themselves.
NEWS
November 8, 1990
By a vote of 375 to 41, the House sent to the White House a bill to keep the Consumer Product Safety Commission alive with budgets of $42 million in fiscal 1991 and $45 million in 1992. President Bush was expected to sign the measure (S605). The agency has been slowed in its mission by battles between consumer and business interests over how far it should go to keep hazardous products off the market. This bill makes it easier for it to obtain a quorum to conduct business.
BUSINESS
April 7, 2013 | By Kenneth R. Harney
WASHINGTON — Got a beef with your mortgage company or loan servicer? Lots of people do, and thousands of them have been turning to a federal complaint hotline for action — or at least a quick response from the lender. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has opened up its bulging online complaint hotline files to public view, and the contents are startling: Although the CFPB's complaint window is open to various financial disputes — credit cards, student loans, credit reporting agencies, bank loans to consumers — by far the biggest source of complaints is home mortgages.
BUSINESS
April 23, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Republicans have stepped up their pressure to limit the wide-ranging powers of the nation's watchdog over consumers' money matters. The head of a key House committee overseeing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said he would no longer accept the testimony of Richard Cordray, the bureau's director, before his panel because he doesn't believe Cordray was legally appointed to his post. Cordray, who delivered his semi-annual report to the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, was set to do the same in coming weeks in the House, as required by law. But Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas)
BUSINESS
July 19, 2011 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
In nominating former Ohio Atty. Gen. Richard Cordray to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, President Obama avoided the highly controversial choice of liberal favorite Elizabeth Warren — but not the controversy. Cordray, 52, was one of the most aggressive state officials in taking on the banking and the mortgage industries after the financial crisis. And in the eyes of some opponents of the agency in Congress and on Wall Street, he's no better a choice to direct the powerful new agency than Warren would have been.
BUSINESS
April 23, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Republicans have stepped up their pressure to limit the wide-ranging powers of the nation's watchdog over consumers' money matters. The head of a key House committee overseeing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said he would no longer accept the testimony of Richard Cordray, the bureau's director, before his panel because he doesn't believe Cordray was legally appointed to his post. Cordray, who delivered his semi-annual report to the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, was set to do the same in coming weeks in the House, as required by law. But Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas)
BUSINESS
April 19, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Older Americans can be confused by dozens of special designations for financial advisors for seniors, and government officials should set strict standards for training and conduct to prevent abuses, according to a new federal report. The ranks of the elderly are projected grow to 70 million by 2030 from 50 million now, and their savings can be an attractive target for people peddling financial products, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said. The bureau, at the request of Congress, studied how advisors to seniors can promote, or designate, themselves.
BUSINESS
April 7, 2013 | By Kenneth R. Harney
WASHINGTON — Got a beef with your mortgage company or loan servicer? Lots of people do, and thousands of them have been turning to a federal complaint hotline for action — or at least a quick response from the lender. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has opened up its bulging online complaint hotline files to public view, and the contents are startling: Although the CFPB's complaint window is open to various financial disputes — credit cards, student loans, credit reporting agencies, bank loans to consumers — by far the biggest source of complaints is home mortgages.
WORLD
April 3, 2013 | By Tracy Wilkinson, Times Staff Writer
MEXICO CITY - In an unusual legal action against the world's richest man, Mexico is suing the telecommunications giant Telmex for charging allegedly illegal fees that were tacked on to what are already some of the highest phone rates among developed countries. The lawsuit, filed in civil court by the federal consumer protection agency, aims to end a set of fees and, in what may be a first in this country, recover money for millions of telephone users. Telmex provides about 80% of fixed telephone lines in Mexico.
BUSINESS
March 1, 2013 | By Kenneth R. Harney
WASHINGTON - Jeanette Ogle, a 92-year-old widow with a reverse mortgage on her house, got a huge birthday surprise recently: She did not lose her home at a scheduled foreclosure auction that had drawn scrutiny from federal and state agencies and consumer advocates. Because of obscure federal rules that critics say have snared unwitting elderly homeowners across the country, Ogle's home in Lake Havasu City, Ariz., had been set for foreclosure on Feb. 27, her birthday. But after interventions on her behalf by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, AARP and the Arizona attorney general's office, the auction was canceled.
BUSINESS
February 14, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Senate Democrats said Thursday that they were united in opposing Republican efforts to weaken the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and told President Obama they supported the renomination of Richard Cordray to head the agency. "It is time to confirm Richard Cordray as CFPB director to give the American people the protections they deserve and the marketplace the certainty it needs to help strengthen our economic recovery," Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-S.D.)
BUSINESS
February 11, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera
WASHINGTON -- About one in 20 consumers had significant errors on their credit reports that could cause them to pay more for auto loans and other financial products, according to a Federal Trade Commission report released Monday. The study also found that about 26% of the approximately 200 million people covered by the U.S. credit reporting industry had at least one "potentially material error" on one of their three credit reports. And four out of five people who took steps to fix errors with one of the three major credit reporting companies -- Experian Information Solutions Inc., Equifax Inc. and TransUnion -- got their credit report changed.
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