The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) said yesterday that it is seeking public comment on a proposal to modify rules governing the access and use of consumer financial data which is collected by a growing number of online financial institutions, Reuters reported. The watchdog proposed updating the 2010 Dodd-Frank Financial Reform law to ensure online banks, financial technology firms and data aggregators act in a consumer’s best interest when collecting their data, the agency said. “While consumer access to financial records can enable the development of innovative and beneficial consumer financial products, it can also present consumer risks,” it said in a statement. From tracking expenditures to trading stocks, there has been an explosion in apps that pull data from consumer checking and saving accounts. App providers say that authorized access to that account data helps make it easier for consumers to invest, borrow money or make payments. But consumer advocates say growing competition between firms to hoard such data puts consumers at risk, since it is not always clear how that data is then used. They point in particular to the growth of artificial intelligence-driven alternative credit scoring and lending data models, which draw on data beyond traditional FICO scores and general credit reports, to make better underwriting decisions.
President Donald Trump ordered a review of decade-old pension cuts to some retirees at a former General Motors auto parts unit, the White House said yesterday, 12 days before the Nov. 3 U.S. presidential election, Reuters reported. In a memo released by the White House, Trump ordered the heads of the Treasury, Commerce and Labor departments to address cuts to non-union retiree pension payments within 90 days at Delphi Corp after the pension plan was turned over to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp (PBGC) in 2009. The cuts affected about 20,000 salaried retirees, including about 5,000 in Ohio, a battleground state that could help decide an election pitting the Republican Trump against Democrat Joe Biden, the former vice president under President Barack Obama. The memo stops short of any specific plan to restore the pension cuts of Delphi salaried retirees, who experienced reductions of up to 70 percent.