Wealth Stripping: Why It Costs So Much to Be Poor
The recently established CFPB goes a long way toward addressing the concerns I’ve laid out here. The agency has broad authority over predatory lending in the mortgage markets as well as retail consumer financial services. The worst of the subprime lending practices that were virulent prior to 2008 have already been eliminated and the CFPB has the authority to ensure they do not return. And, for the first time, the federal government, through the CFPB, has direct authority over the financial-services practices of alternative or fringe lenders. But the CFPB is not a panacea. For example, it is not authorized to address the challenges presented by vacant and abandoned properties resulting from foreclosures.
While much progress has been made, a great deal of work still needs to be done. The failure of private institutions to serve all families and communities equally has been an important impediment to disadvantaged families. Getting our leaders to begin caring about such families is essential to creating greater economic equality and a financially stronger America.
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