Financial Reform

Media Hit | Financial Reform

Capital Times: Congress must stand up for consumers

The failure of the current bank regulators to stop predatory lending and other reckless Wall Street practices is widely recognized as a primary cause of the 2008 mortgage meltdown that triggered the current recession. For years leading up to the 2008 financial collapse, federal bank regulators ignored numerous warnings of increasingly predatory mortgage practices, credit card tricks and unfair overdraft policies used by banks. The banks were earning billions from “gotcha” practices. Incredibly, bank regulators actively encouraged this behavior, arguing it was profitable and kept banks safe.

Report | WISPIRG Foundation | Financial Reform

10 Reasons We Need the CFPB Now

The report documents that while the failure of federal regulators to prevent predatory mortgage lending is well known, it is less well-known that federal regulators also failed to stop unfair credit card tricks, overdraft fee schemes and the growth of triple-digit APR and payday loans, which are now imposing a crushing financial burden on many families.

The report documents that these failures lead to the conclusion that consumer protection should be housed in one agency with just one job, protecting consumers from unsafe financial products, no matter where they buy them, at banks, payday lenders or other firms.

News Release | WISPIRG | Financial Reform

New Consumer Agency Takes Over Thursday as Nation’s Consumer Bank Cop; Industry Mounts Opposition to Bureau and Any Nominated Director

Leading consumer groups today announced the results of a poll showing that an overwhelming majority of likely voters both support a new consumer agency (74%) and want Wall Street held “accountable” (77%), along with a report documenting “10 reasons” consumers need the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. 

Media Hit | Financial Reform

WI Radio Network: Groups claims banks are not disclosing fee policy

A new study claims banks are still hiding fees from customers. WISPIRG Program Associate Kyle Bailey says in their nationwide survey of more than 350 bank branches, fewer than half complied fully in disclosing the policy of customer fees. Roughly 25-percent of the branches never provided the information at all.

News Release | WISPIRG | Financial Reform

New Survey Shows Banks Still Hiding Fees From Customers

A survey of more than 350 bank branches released today by the Wisconsin Public Interest Research Group revealed that fewer than half of branches obeyed their legal duty to fully disclose fees to prospective customers, while one in four provided no fee information at all.

Kudos to President Obama for standing up for consumers this week by making a recess appointment of former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The President’s action means that the CFPB now has all its powers to protect the public from unfair financial practices, whether by banks or other financial firms, such as payday lenders and credit bureaus.

A VICTORY FOR CONSUMERS OVER WALL STREET

Even after the financial crisis, lobbyists for the big banks and credit card companies furiously opposed proconsumer provisions in the Wall Street reform law. Over their objections, WISPIRG helped convince Congress to create a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Moore's amendment on credit insurance regulation draws fire

Rep. Gwen Moore, who says her own experience with predatory lending drew her to politics, is raising the ire of consumer advocates for trying to stop a proposed consumer protection agency from regulating credit insurance.

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