President Barack Obama Thursday appointed two key financial regulators, naming Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray to a full, five-year term, and nominating former federal prosecutor Mary Jo White to chair the Securities and Exchange Commission.
NAFCU President/CEO Fred Becker said he appreciates Cordray’s outreach to credit unions on regulatory matters and the bureau's willingness to hear and take into account concerns raised by the credit union industry. Although NAFCU has advocated a five-member commission to oversee the CFPB rather than a single administrator, the trade said it has forged a strong working relationship with Cordray.
CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney also praised Cordray’s accessibility and willingness to listen to CUNA’s views on the CFPB’s agenda and proposed regulations.
Mortgage Bankers Association President/CEO David H. Stevens called Cordray “thoughtful, balanced, open minded, accessible and communicative; attributes which are all critical to effectively leading the CFPB’s mission.”
“While we do not, and likely will not, always agree on the best approach to the agency’s rulemakings, the ability to debate and discuss the key elements of proposed and final rules, and to have meaningful dialogue, remains a testament to his leadership,” Stevens said.
However, John Berlau, senior fellow for finance and access to capital at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, blasted Cordray and the contested unconstitutionality of his recess appointment, as well as the “unaccountable structure of the CFPB”.
The libertarian-leaning CEI fellow was more positive about White’s appointment, saying she established an admirable record as a U.S. attorney and said although she is likely to take positions conservatives and libertarians may object to, her appointment “may result in an SEC that is transparent and somewhat accountable.”