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The Path Forward: Consumer Protection with Rohit Chopra

Rohit Chopra joins Washington Post Live on Thursday, Feb. 10 (Video: The Washington Post)

Rohit Chopra is director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the government agency responsible for protecting families and businesses in banking, housing, lending and financial technology. Chopra, a former Federal Trade Commissioner, will discuss consumer protection in the era of big banks and big tech, competition in the financial sector and how Americans can protect their finances in this turbulent time. Join Washington Post editorial writer and columnist Heather Long.

Click here for transcript

Highlights

“Top on the list of the components of inflation we see is related to automobiles. Auto loans outstanding in the U.S. are already well over a trillion dollars and I expect that we might see that get even higher.” – Rohit Chopra (Video: Washington Post Live)
“People are getting sick and tired of this fee creep that is all over the economy. There are more and more line items that are being added to bills that essentially obscure the upfront price of a product… Consumers want to know what is going on with this.” – Rohit Chopra (Video: Washington Post Live)
“There’s also a surveillance creep across the economy too that more and more firms are tracking us, harvesting our data, monetizing it, and I think there’s really a question there of, ‘What are some of these giant tech companies doing with it?’ I really wonder whether it makes sense for this data to not have a clear set of transparency about how it’s being used.” – Rohit Chopra (Video: Washington Post Live)
“There’s a big difference in many ways between what regulators have been talking around around stablecoins versus a cryptocurrency that is not tied to the dollar… Generally speaking, most of the market today… is related to speculative trading. But I do think it could scale quite quickly if one of the big tech pay platforms starts integrating it and expanding its use.” – Rohit Chopra (Video: Washington Post Live)
"Many people are dealing with… their student loans did not necessarily get them ahead in life. Many of them have had to deal with a maze of bureaucratic red tape through financial companies to get in a repayment plan they can afford. We saw millions and millions of defaults over the last ten years and that has been devastating to people… I am concerned about the start of repayment again. I am worried about that and it is something that we are thinking hard about preparing for if it does come in May. But really we need to rethink this system completely, because we really created a mess many years ago.” – Rohit Chopra (Video: Washington Post Live)

Rohit Chopra

Provided by the CFPB.

Rohit Chopra is Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The CFPB is a unit of the Federal Reserve System charged with protecting families and honest businesses from illegal practices by financial institutions, and ensuring that markets for consumer financial products and services are fair, transparent, and competitive. As Director, Chopra is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Financial Stability Oversight Council.

In 2018, Chopra was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate as a Commissioner on the Federal Trade Commission, where he served until assuming office as CFPB Director. During his tenure at the FTC, he successfully worked to strengthen sanctions against repeat offenders, to reverse the agency’s reliance on no-money, no-fault settlements in fraud cases, and to halt abuses of small businesses. He also led efforts to revitalize dormant authorities, such as those to protect the Made in USA label and to promote competition.

The Director previously served at the CFPB from 2010 to 2015. In 2011, the Secretary of the Treasury designated him as the agency’s student loan ombudsman, where he led the Bureau’s efforts on student lending issues. Prior to his government service, Chopra worked at McKinsey & Company, the global management consultancy, where he worked in the financial services, health care, and consumer technology sectors.

Chopra holds a BA from Harvard University and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

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