The CFPB sent letters to the CEOs of five major credit card issuers regarding their companies’ payment provision practices.
In the letters, the CFPB cites a 2020 report in which it provided data showing a decline in the share of commercial lines of credit cards containing actual payment data since 2012. The CFPB states in the letters that based on readily available credit report information, the CFPB understands that each of the companies to whom a letter has been sent currently does not regularly or consistently report actual payment amount information to credit reporting agencies nationwide. He says that without this information, lenders may find it more difficult to assess credit and provide consumers with the most advantageous credit offers. Further, according to the CFPB, consumers’ reasonable expectation of receiving credit at a competitive price based on their ability to pay is undermined by the “suppression” of actual payment information. The letters include a series of questions regarding the companies’ practices in providing real payment data, including why the companies do or do not provide real payment data.
In its 2020 report, the CFPB noted the FCRA’s requirements regarding the provision of accurate information and for providers to establish and implement reasonable written policies and procedures regarding the accuracy and integrity of information. provided. Although the CFPB did not directly suggest that the FCRA require financial institutions that provide consumer reporting agencies to include actual payment data, in our blog post on the report, we suggested that this might presage a careful review by CFPB examiners of a financial institution‘s procurement practices. actual payment data. The new letters to CEOs indicate that the CFPB remains focused on this issue.
The CFPB might have treated the issue of providing payment as a supervisory issue or by using its authority under CFPA Section 1022 to send Market Surveillance Orders (like last october request information from the six major technology platforms). By requesting payment providing information to card issuers through the use of a public letter, Director Chopra demonstrates his stated intention to use all available CFPB tools.