Consumer Finance

The OCC Stands Up for Fossil Fuels, Gun Makers, Opioid Manufacturers, and Payday Lenders

11/20/20

Those wascally wabbits at OCC are back at it again in the waning light of the Trumpshchina. The OCC has proposed a rule on "Fair Access to Financial Services." 

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Congressional testimony on Small Business Lending regulation

09/09/20

I am testifying later today (virtually) before the House Small Business Committee on "Transparency in Small Business Lending."  My written testimony is here.

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Student Loan Relief Update

08/15/20

Student loan relief provisions required by the CARES Act expire on September 30. Those protections included 1) for all federal direct loans: zero interest and automatic payment forbearance, 2) credit towards IDR and PSLF forgiveness for the 6 months covered by the Act, and importantly, 3) suspension of wage garnishments and other collections on defaulted loans.

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How to Start Closing the Racial Wealth Gap

06/17/20

I have an article out in The American Prospect about How to Start Closing the Racial Wealth Gap. Unlike a lot of writing bemoaning the racial wealth gap, this piece has a concrete reform that could be undertaken on day 1 of a Biden administration without any need for legislation or even notice-and-comment rulemaking.

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We Can Cancel Student Loans for Essential Workers Now

05/27/20

While the House HEROES bill's scaled-down student loan forgiveness is unlikely to become law, many essential workers are eligible for student loan cancellation now under existing law. The Public Service Loan Forgiveness program covers all police, firefighters, public school teachers, nurses, soldiers, prison guards, and contact tracers, among others.

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American Predatory Lending and the North Carolina model

05/22/20

My coauthor Ed Balleisen has co-founded a program on consumer lending of interest to Credit Slips readers. Its initial data collection is particularly useful in documenting the North Carolina experience and its implications for other states.

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The Brown M&M Theory of Telltale Minor Regulatory Violations or What's Wrong with "Earn a savings rate 5X the national average"?

05/21/20

A CapitalOne savings account ad has got me thinking about whether Van Halen has anything to teach regulators. Van Halen is famous for its use of a contract that requires provision of M&Ms for the band, but expressly prohibits provision of any brown M&Ms.

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PSLF update

04/20/20

The success rate for Public Service Loan Forgiveness applicants has doubled. From 1% to 2%.

Thinking they have completed their 10 years of payments, 140,000 student loan borrowers had applied for cancellation through February 29, and about 3,000 had received a discharge, including 1,300 under the “temporary expanded” PSLF who were put in the wrong repayment plan by their servicers.

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Coronavirus Will Hasten the Shift To App-Based Banking and Lending. How Will That Affect People's Pocketbooks?

04/14/20

Over at the Machine Lawyering blog -- organized and edited by the Chinese University of Hong Kong's Law Faculty’s Centre for Financial Regulation and Economic Development -- Slipster Nathalie Martin and I just posted some commentary about our new article,

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Treasury Must Act Now To Protect Relief Payments From Debt Collectors

04/08/20

The CARES Act provides for direct "rebate" payments to American households. Treasury is gearing up to send some of those payments out soon. But Congress forgot to protect the payments from garnishment.

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