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Consumer-finance watchdog targets debt collectors
Consumer-finance watchdog agency sets priorities: debt collectors, credit report bureaus
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) ' The nation's new cop on the consumer-finance beat is zeroing in on debt collectors and credit reporting companies.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Thursday proposed to add debt collectors and credit bureaus to the list of industries that agency officials can supervise in-person.

The agency gained the power to oversee payday lenders, mortgage companies and private student lenders last month, after President Barack Obama used a recess appointment to install its director. It also can write rules to supervise other big companies.

Officials say they chose debt collectors and credit bureaus because those industries touch a vast number of consumers. They say consumers can't shop around if a debt collector is abusive or unfair.

It's the first time those industries would face in-person supervision similar to bank oversight.

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