The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Investigates Private Student Loan Practices

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Student debt now amounts to $1.2 trillion outstanding, and Rohit Chorpa, an Assistant Director at the CFPB, is probing to find out what kind of refinancing options lenders offer to struggling borrowers.

According to Rohit Chorpa’s testimony to the committee on the budget, “there has been growing consensus that today’s $1.2 trillion can have repercussions that threaten the economic security of young Americans and broader economic growth.” It is for this reason that he will collect information for consumer education and analysis of the market.

Some of the data collected will be made public, but it won’t tie any data to specific lenders. Among the lenders involved in private student loans are Wells Fargo, JP Morgan, Sallie Mae, Citizens Financial Group Inc., PNC Financial Services Group Inc., Discover Financial Services and SunTrust Banks Inc. Privatized student loans are about 15% of the student loans market.

Banks have been under criticism for student loan practices in the past. At a july senate hearing, Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts criticized banks for not doing more to aid student loan refinancing, and was critical of lobbying that protects student loans from being defaulted on during bankruptcy.