CFPB Reviews Spring 2018 Rulemaking Agenda

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) listed “the regulatory matters that the Bureau reasonably anticipates having under consideration during the period from May 1, 2018, to April 30, 2019.” This agenda is part of the Spring 2018 Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions. The notice outlined Acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney’s leadership priorities.

In a blog post, the CFPB explained that it intends to reopen rulemaking regarding two prior regulations: (i) the implementation of the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, regarding, among other aspects, the “institutional and transactional coverage tests and the rule’s discretionary data points” and (ii) the Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loans rule before their compliance dates in August 2019. The CFPB plans to maintain certain other rulemakings that were previously implemented.

The CFPB also set out its agenda for proposed rules and guidance. Among other things, the agency noted that it would attempt to reduce any “unwarranted regulatory burden.” The CFPB intends to:

  • propose a rule to improve communication practices and consumer disclosures of collectors under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act;
  • require financial institutions “to collect, report and make public certain information concerning credit applications made by women-owned, minority-owned, and small businesses”; and
  • open rulemaking to address mortgage requirement issues under the Dodd-Frank Act.

The CFPB also listed its potential long-term actions (beyond the next 12-month period) and reclassified certain rulemakings as “inactive.” Regulation Z subparts B and G, which concern the extension of credit under the Truth in Lending Act, will be moved to the long-term actions list.

Lofchie Comment: Mr. Mulvaney’s rethinking of Mr. Cordray’s policies illustrates the potential benefits of reconstituting the CFPB from being a bureau led by a single partisan individual to a commission with representatives of both major political parties. With a five-person commission, if the chair of the commission attempts to obtain unanimous votes on new rules, it is far more likely that those rules will reflect a consensus that is likely to survive elections.