Learn about the Bureau

The central mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is to make markets for consumer financial products and services work for Americans — whether they are applying for a mortgage, choosing among credit cards, or using any number of other consumer financial products.

The consumer bureau is working to:

icon for financial education


An informed consumer is the first line of defense against abusive practices.

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Like a neighborhood cop on the beat, the CFPB supervises banks, credit unions, and other financial companies, and we will enforce Federal consumer financial laws.


The consumer bureau gathers and analyzes available information to better understand consumers, financial services providers, and consumer financial markets.

Above all, this means ensuring that consumers get the information they need to make the financial decisions they believe are best for themselves and their families—that prices are clear up front, that risks are visible, and that nothing is buried in fine print. In a market that works, consumers should be able to make direct comparisons among products and no provider should be able to build, or feel pressure to build, a business model around unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices.

Core functions

The consumer bureau is working to give consumers the information they need to understand the terms of their agreements with financial companies. We are working to make regulations and guidance as clear and streamlined as possible so providers of consumer financial products and services can follow the rules on their own.

Congress established the CFPB to protect consumers by carrying out Federal consumer financial laws. Among other things, we:

  • Conduct rule-making, supervision, and enforcement for Federal consumer financial protection laws
  • Restrict unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices
  • Take consumer complaints
  • Promote financial education
  • Research consumer behavior
  • Monitor financial markets for new risks to consumers
  • Enforce laws that outlaw discrimination and other unfair treatment in consumer finance

Getting started

Building the CFPB: A Progress Report. Click the image to read the full report.

Learn what the CFPB has been doing in preparation to work for the American public.

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (Dodd-Frank Act) established the consumer bureau. In January of 2012, President Obama appointed Rich Cordray to be the first Director of the CFPB.

Learn more about Director Rich Cordray.

Read more about the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

As of July 21st, we had:

  • Launched Know Before You Owe, an effort to combine two federally required mortgage disclosures into a single, simpler form that makes the costs and risks of the loan clear and allows consumers to comparison shop.
  • Brought together industry representatives, consumer groups, academics, government experts, and others for a conference to review data on how the CARD Act, coupled with the recession and its aftermath, have affected supply, demand, and pricing within the credit card marketplace.
  • Released reports on:
    - The impact of the CARD Act of 2009,
    - Variation in credit scores sold by certain consumer reporting agencies,
    - Remittances, specifically remittance exchange rates and the use of remittance histories for credit scores, and
    - The progress we have made in Building the CFPB.
  • Reached out to small, independent bankers from all 50 states.
  • Issued a Notice and Request for Comment seeking public input on issues relevant to defining a “larger participant” in certain consumer financial markets.

The Bureau’s structure

CFPB Org Chart

The Bureau’s organizational chart as of February 2013. View a larger version of this image.