Good for the consumer financial protection board
By Arnold Kling
Cardholders who enrolled in a payment protection or credit monitoring product — or who tried to cancel one of these products but were persuaded by a call center representative to keep it — on or after August 1, 2010, will be refunded the money they paid for the product, as well as any finance charges, over-the-limit fees or interest paid, the CFPB said.
Capital One will also stop marketing all of these products until it submits a compliance plan that is approved by the CFPB.
This is a case of a sophisticated financial institution taking advantage of unsophisticated consumers, and I applaud the Consumer Financial Protection Board for doing something about it.
And, no, the CFPB is not an agency that I expected to find myself applauding.
UPDATE: On the other hand, I am inclined to agree with Jonathan Macey that the new mortgage rules are not so good. Here, the CFPB appears to have gone beyond thinking about how to protect naive consumers. Instead, it is trying to create a “pro-consumer” mortgage product, and as Macey points out, loading a mortgage with features that work to the detriment of the lender is going to reduce the supply of loans. Here is where I think that principles-based regulation is more likely to produce better results.