MBA, Trade Groups Ask CFPB to Extend Comment Period on ECOA Request for Information

The Mortgage Bankers Association and nearly a dozen industry trade organizations on Aug. 10 asked the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to extend the comment period on its Request for Information on expanding access to credit through Regulation B, which implements the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

The RFI (, issued July 30, seek public input on “how best to create a regulatory environment” that expands access to credit and ensures that all consumers and communities are protected from discrimination in all aspects of a credit transaction. The Bureau set a 60-day period for comments, due Oct. 2.

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act and Regulation B make it unlawful for any creditor to discriminate against any applicant, with respect to any aspect of a credit transaction on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status or age; because all or part of the applicant’s income derives from any public assistance program; or because the applicant has in good faith exercised any right under the Consumer Credit Protection Act.

The letter to CFPB Kathy Kraninger said the 60-day deadline is inadequate to address nearly a dozen issues presented in the RFI.

“A 60-day comment period does not provide sufficient time to meaningfully address the ten important issue areas presented in the RFI,” the letter said. “Comment on each one of these issues is vital to achieving a fairer and more inclusive marketplace. In addition, the COVID-19 emergency and shutdowns make the 60-day comment period even more challenging for all of us.  For these reasons, developing thoughtful comments on each issue to help the Bureau achieve those goals will take more time than has been allotted.”

The letter also notes in addition to the importance of addressing discrimination in financial markets now, the last comprehensive amendments to Regulation B occurred more than 15 years ago. 

“We believe that consideration of how Regulation B might be changed or clarified to ensure more equity and fairness should be done through a process that affords a greater opportunity for thoughtful public participation,” the letter said. “Therefore, we respectfully request that the CFPB extend the public comment period by at least an additional 60 days.”

Joining MBA in the letter: the American Bankers Association; Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund. the Bank Policy Institute; the Center for Responsible Lending; the Consumer Bankers Association; the Housing Policy Council; Independent Community Bankers of America; the National Community Reinvestment Coalition; the National Consumer Law Center; the National Fair Housing Alliance; and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.