The ‘Three E’s’ of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

s)-‘Three E’s’ can be counted on to prepare citizens with the information to make sound financial decisions. This is the strategy that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has employed since its creation after the Great Recession of 2008 to empower, enforce and educate consumers.


University of Utah S.J. Quinney School of Law professor Christopher L. Peterson was charged with evaluating the performance of the CFPB since its origin. His findings were based around seven key points that were published in a report titled, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Law Enforcement: An Empirical Review.

“Many people believe that the deck is stacked against middle-class families,” said Peterson. “And there is real reason for concern. But the news out of Washington is not all bad. More than any time in a generation, financial institutions have to think twice before they swindle their customers.”

Empowerment is given to CFPB constituents with tools, answers to frequently asked questions, and tips to make financial choices and look for the best deal.

Enforcement ensures that parties found guilty of violations return funds to affected consumers.

Education is provided in the form of research for financial success in every stage of life.

“The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s law enforcement cases put over $11 billion back in consumers’ pockets when they were cheated by financial institutions,” said Peterson. “The research shows that in the ten years since the financial crisis, the federal government has created a more proactive, modern financial regulator that is working on behalf of the public interest.”

Peterson’s seven major points were …

  1. The CFPB has not lost a case since its start through 2015. One hundred twenty-two actions have generated over $11 billion in consumer remedy and forgiven debts.
  2. When the financial companies illegally deceived consumers, the CFPB recovered over 90 percent of all damages sought.
  3. For instances when collaboration with other agencies was needed, over 90 percent of all consumer relief was awarded to the CFPB.
  4. Not a single CFPB enforcement action has been contested.
  5. Individual senior managers at financial companies have been held responsible for illegal acts.
  6. The Consumer Financial Protection Act’s new “abusive” acts and practices standard have been carefully enforced.
  7. About $9.3 million were brought about per employee for public cases involving illegal financial practices concluded last year.

The ‘three E’s’ of the CPFB’s mission will continue to help consumers understand their options and comparison shop all while helping companies limit the impact of the seven issues raised in Peterson’s findings.


Author: Mike DeVine

Writer and Editor. History buff. Doing sports things. Film fan. University of Wisconsin-Madison Graduate [B.A. English '06]. @UWAlumni Lifetime Member.

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