Non-Direct Auto Lending: Is the CFPB Asserting Jurisdiction over the Capital Markets?

By: Laurence E. Platt

The capital markets should look closely at the proposed rule of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (the “CFPB”) to supervise certain larger non-bank automobile finance companies because of the CFPB’s assertion of broad authority over large purchasers of auto loans and auto leases. The CFPB’s interest in indirect auto lending is not new. The proposed rule, however, purports to give the CFPB jurisdiction over any large purchaser of auto loans and auto leases, regardless of whether the purchaser had any direct involvement with the lender or reasonably could be construed to be the indirect originator. In its defense, the CFPB would stop its jurisdiction at the door of securitization, but any purchases up to that point may be fair game. The logic underlying this position could be extended by the CFPB to mortgages, credit cards, and virtually any other type of consumer product or service. Interested parties may want to comment by the December 8, 2014 due date.

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