CFPB Tells Banks to Keep Quiet About Fed’s Activities

posted January 28, 2015


CFPB Admonishes Banks as FDIC and DOJ Continue Damage Control
After USCC Exposure of Administration’s Aggressive Tactics

January 28, 2015 – Washington, D.C. – Brian Wise, Senior Advisor for the US Consumer Coalition (USCC), issued the following statement today in response to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) issuance of a supervisory bulletin to banks admonishing them to keep federal regulatory investigations secret. The move comes as calls for an end to the Administration’s controversial Operation Choke Point program have increased after USCC released audio tapes where bank executives confirmed federal agents forced them to sever banking relationships with gun dealers and other legal businesses.

“Following the release by USCC of audio recordings of a credit union executive talking about intimidation by federal regulators, the CFPB has apparently decided to take that intimidation public by issuing a guidance reminding banks not to discuss details of federal bank examinations.

“The audio tapes obtained by USCC, which received national media attention earlier this month, undoubtedly sent shockwaves through the agencies involved in ‘Choke Point.’ Those regulators are taking an exceptionally forceful role in dictating to banks which American businesses have access to the financial system and which should not.

“Operation Choke Point is not winding down, and it is not just about two agencies’ overreach of authority. The guidance issued by the CFPB doubles down on the aggressive regulatory environment of this Administration by not only propping up Choke Point, but also advising banks that the Fed-based agency can also force banks to violate certain non-disclosure agreements with customers. These extra-legal methods and intimidation tactics are getting worse. It is time Congress takes steps to rein in the CFPB and end Operation Choke Point.”


Rob Damschen
(202) 617-6155