The Consumer’s Defender

A federal regulator that is making a difference

Andy Spears
2 min readJan 17


Photo by Danny Howe on Unsplash

Consumers are often at a disadvantage in the financial marketplace.

Those offering credit or financing have a built-in advantage: They can offer what the consumer wants IF the consumer will simply sign a document with a lot of fine print.

But what if that fine print puts the consumer at a disadvantage?

There’s some recent news that suggests consumers may have a powerful ally:

And, advocates for consumers at the Center for Responsible Lending have also taken notice, heralding the work of the CFPB:

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) ordered Wells to pay $3.7 billion for a fine and redress, which provides compensation for millions of harmed consumers, changes bank practices, and shows why we need the consumer bureau. Congress should not undermine funding for the CFPB, the only government agency dedicated to defending consumers from financial malfeasance.

Before the 2008 Financial Crisis, predatory lending was rampant.

Predatory lending caused the Great Recession, costing millions of Americans their homes, jobs and savings. Foreclosures exceeded my organization’s projection of over 2 million homes lost, which industry derided as “absurdly pessimistic.”

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Andy Spears

Writer and policy advocate living in Nashville, TN —Public Policy Ph.D. — writes on education policy, consumer affairs, and more . . .