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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 21, 2011
12:07 PM

CONTACT: US PIRG

Ed Mierzwinski, Consumer Program Director
U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG)
Office: 202-546-9470
EdM@pirg.org
Tweeting @USPIRG
John Carey, AFR, (202)466-1854

New Report Highlights Reasons for New Consumer Protections

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau “Stands Up” Today

WASHINGTON - July 21 - The report, entitled “10 Reasons We Need The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Now”, outlines predatory financial practices that hurt consumers and led to the collapse the economy, costing us eight million jobs, millions of foreclosed homes and trillions of dollars in lost home and retirement values.

US PIRG Education Fund and Americans for Financial Reform released the report to highlight that on July 21 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) starts its job as the first federal agency with the sole mission of ensuring fair play in the consumer financial marketplace. Nearly three-quarters of voters (74%) are in favor of the agency. The report makes clear just how important the CFPB is to protecting consumers.


Excerpt:

 “The idea of a federal consumer protection agency focused on credit and payment products gained broad and high-profile support because it targets one of the most significant underlying causes of the massive regulatory failures that did so much damage to families and to our economy. […] The failure of federal banking agencies to stem sub-prime mortgage lending abuses is well documented. […] Less well known are federal regulatory failures that have contributed to the extension of unsustainable consumer loans, such as credit card, overdraft and payday loans, which are now imposing a crushing financial burden on many families.”

 Ed Mierzwinski, report author and consumer program director of U.S.  PIRG: “This report is particularly timely because there are serious efforts to undermine the CFPB on Capitol Hill. Congress shouldn’t forget that a lack of consumer protection led to the Wall Street-led collapse of the economy and only a consumer cop on the beat can protect consumers from it happening again.”

Lisa Donner, executive director ofAmericans for Financial Reform:  ““Today is an important day for consumers. Abusive loans loaded with tricks and traps have cost families hundreds of billions of dollars over the years. And they were a fundamental cause of the financial crisis that has cost millions of jobs and devastated our economy. The CFPB will level the playing field for families, making the consumer credit market work for borrowers and lenders alike, and making the whole economy safer.”

Click here to view the full report.

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U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs), stands up to powerful special interests on behalf of the American public, working to win concrete results for our health and our well-being. With a strong network of researchers, advocates, organizers and students in state capitols across the country, we take on the special interests on issues, such as product safety,political corruption, prescription drugs and voting rights,where these interests stand in the way of reform and progress.



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