The CFPB has issued its Spring 2018 Semi-Annual Report to Congress covering the period October 1, 2017 through March 31, 2018.
At 41 pages, the new report is even shorter than the Bureau’s last semi-annual report (which was 55 pages) and continues what appears to be a goal under Acting Director Mulvaney’s leadership of issuing semi-annual reports that are substantially shorter than those issued under the leadership of former Director Cordray. Like the prior semi-annual report under Mr. Mulvaney’s leadership, and also in contrast to the reports issued under former Director Cordray’s leadership, the new report does not contain any aggregate numbers for how much consumers obtained in consumer relief and how much was assessed in civil money penalties in supervisory and enforcement actions during the period covered by the report.
Pursuant to Section 1017(a)(1) of the Dodd-Frank Act, subject to the Act’s funding cap, the Fed is required to transfer to the CFPB on a quarterly basis “the amount determined by the [CFPB] Director to be reasonably necessary to carry out the authorities of the Bureau under Federal consumer financial law, taking into account such other sums made available to the Bureau from the preceding year (or quarter of such year.)” The new report references the January 2018 letter sent by Mr. Mulvaney to former Fed Chair Yellen requesting no funds for the second quarter of Fiscal Year 2018.
Mr. Mulvaney has, however, sent letters to Fed Chair Powell requesting funds transfers for the third and fourth quarters of FY 2018 and for the first quarter of FY 2019. The amounts requested are, respectively, $98.5 million, $65.7 million, and $172.9 million. (In contrast, former Director Cordray’s final transfer request, which was for the first quarter of FY 2018, sought a transfer of $217.1 million.) Two of Mr. Mulvaney’s letters included the following statement:
By design, this funding mechanism [created by Section 1017(a)(1)] denies the American people their rightful control over how the Bureau spends their money, which undermines the Bureau’s legitimacy. The Bureau should be funded through Congressional appropriations. However, I am bound to execute the law as written.
The new report indicates that the Bureau had 1,671 employees as of March 31, 2018, representing a slight increase in the number of employees (1,627) as of March 31, 2017. The new report does not discuss any ongoing or past developments of significance beyond those we have covered in previous blog posts.