President-elect Trump, save the CFPB

Ten years ago, bullies had taken over the playground. Financial service firms preyed on their customers with impunity:

—Lenders made expensive, risky mortgages to people who couldn’t afford to pay the money back.

—Credit card issuers foisted overpriced insurance and other add-on products on millions of unsuspecting customers.

—Credit bureaus ignored evidence submitted by people disputing errors in their credit reports.

—Companies sold delinquent debts to collection agencies that ran amok, violating fair debt collection laws and strong-arming people into repaying debts they didn’t even owe.

People’s complaints fell on deaf ears, since consumer protection wasn’t a priority at any agency. Huge swaths of the credit and debt industries, including credit bureaus, collection agencies and payday lenders, operated with little government oversight.

Then the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau pushed back.

In my latest for the Associated Press, why President-elect Donald Trump needs to save the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

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    Liz – I am regular follower of your column. Elder abuse in the form of financial fraud is absolutely rampant. I do not want to see anything happen to the CFPB. If Elizabeth Warren would settle down and accept the election results, she would have time to get back to defending this absolutely necessary agency. Unless there is a way to strengthen elder financial abuse laws we will not make any progress towards eliminating it. I think that the best solution would be as Public Accounting Firms (I am not involved in public accounting) ramp up their ‘Family Office’ services, that they take under management clients who are elderly and who have assets. I don’t trust the banks to do it even though they manage trust departments. Smaller accounting firms are desperate to provide more client services and this should be one of them. I think these firms would be less likely to be involved in self dealing.