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CFPB May Target Banks' Checking Account Policies

Joe Mont | October 9, 2014

Next up on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s agenda: how banks screen customers when they open checking accounts. At a forum in Washington D.C. this week, CFPB Director Richard Cordray raised the issue of whether financial institutions unfairly block some consumers from opening checking accounts, while exposing others to inappropriate risk.

When consumers go to a bank or credit union to set up a checking account, they are screened for risk factors, including whether they have engaged in any fraudulent or illegal conduct, such as money laundering. Banks and credit unions also screen consumers to determine if they pose a credit risk and how likely it is they will incur overdrafts and pay them back.

In their screening for risk, banks and credit...

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