CFPB and DOT hold joint hearing on credit card and airline rewards programs

To advance the Biden administration's “junk fee” agenda, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the U.S. Department of Transportation will host a hearing on airline and credit card rewards programs on Thursday, May 9, 2024. CFPB Director Rohit Chopra and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg will moderate discussions with the following industry representatives, labor leaders and consumer advocates:

  1. Scott DeAngelo, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Allegiant Airlines
  2. Morgan Harper, director of policy and advocacy at the American Economic Freedom Project
  3. Andrew Grimm, President and CEO of Apple Federal Credit Union
  4. Sara Nelson, International President, Association of Flight Attendants
  5. Lukas Johnson, Chief Commercial Officer, Breeze Airlines
  6. Erin Witte, Director of Consumer Protection, Consumer Federation of America
  7. Robert Patrick Cooper, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, OneUnited Bank

Afterwards, we will participate in the joint hearing and publish relevant blogs.

Director Chopra's statement at an industry conference in March indicated that the CFPB is planning to review credit card rewards programs. He told reporters: “We will look at the credit card rewards market because of the increase in consumer complaints. What marketing experts and consultants are telling credit card issuers is that they should focus consumers' attention on great rewards, but when they pay a lot of interest And may switch to a credit card with a lower rate, they should withhold information from them, even within the scope of the credit card issuer. We previously blogged in February that the Senate Judiciary Committee sought Visa, Testimony from the CEOs of Mastercard, United Airlines and American Airlines, who spoke out against Sen. Dick Durbin's (D-IL) credit card competition bill, did not take place until the White House convened a hearing in March 2023. A bipartisan panel of top academics and business leaders discussed the economic case for supporting the Biden administration’s crackdown on “trash fees,” inviting academics, practitioners and representatives from 16 agencies, including the Department of Transportation, CFPB, FTC, FCC and HUD, discusses “How trash fees distort competition.”

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