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Multiagency focus on fairness principles, including access, treatment, and product risks—“say what you do, do what you say.”


Banking, capital markets, and insurance regulators will continue to assess the fairness of  financial market products and services over the “customer journey,” including development,  marketing, sales, servicing, and complaints/claims management. Consumer and investor  protections will look to “unfairness” and marketing claims to fulfillment, under both new and  existing regulations. Supervisory intensity will be applied to increases in model usage (including  data permissibility) and bias outcomes.

Fairness and potential breaches to customer trust will be driven through:

Supervision and Enforcement: Fairness will continue to be examined throughout the  customer journey and across products and services (e.g., auto loans, servicing, payments,  deposits, advertising, sales, and data and privacy practices), as well as underlying decision-  making processes, including the use of “automated systems” (e.g., models, algorithms,  programs, AI/ML) and related marketing/advertising. Fairness should also be factored into  a firm’s operations through dynamic and ongoing risk assessment processes, monitoring,  testing and data analyses.

Regulatory Expansion: Despite potential court challenges on regulatory authority, regulators  will continue to apply an expanded lens of fairness to existing regulations (e.g., UDAAP/  UDAP). Expect revisions to existing regulations and guidance (e.g., CRA, merger and antitrust  reviews, and conflicts of interest) and new regulations to include fairness considerations.

And while legal challenges could potentially extend implementation timelines for certain new  rules and proposals (e.g., CFPB’s 1071 small business lending rule), regulators will expect the  industry to continue preparedness and implementation planning.


Through rulemakings, regulators will look to improve transparency, access, and treatment  for consumers and investors. Example areas of regulatory focus will include:

  • Market Structure Changes: Anticipated changes to the retail trading market structure  aim to reduce “inefficiencies” that may disproportionately impact retail investors. The  changes promote transparency and market competition through new Best Execution  standards, expanded order execution disclosure, “improvements” to certain pricing and  fees, and increased order competition.
  • Fair Treatment: Regulatory focus on complaints, claims, and fraud management,  with particular focus around timeliness, substance, and completeness of responses  will be ongoing. Regulators will look for consistency between consumer groups and  responsive/fair remediation of disputes.

Product Risk

Regulators are expanding oversight from product risk to include execution risk, reinforcing  the expectation that firms will be held to the standard of “say what you do, do what you say.”  Regulators will assess whether products and services are fulfilled fairly, consistently with the  terms and statements provided customers, and that representations are not misleading to a  “reasonable” consumer. These efforts will be seen in 2024 around:

  • Clarity: Continued regulatory focus on the clarity, completeness, accuracy, and consistency of  statements and claims made regarding products and services in related marketing, advertising,  and disclosures.
  • Supervision: Continued scrutiny to evaluate whether:
    • Products and services are offered on substantially the same terms to all consumers/investors  and are not designed to favor one group over another.
    • Analyses are conducted to identify potential discriminatory outcomes and/or conflicts of  interest related to a product or service (including those offered through third or fourth parties,  and especially where automated systems are being used,) and steps are taken to mitigate  that risk.
    • The “reasonableness” of certain fees or material statements of fact can be substantiated  (e.g., “tangible benefit” to the consumer or investor).
    • Investigations of complaints are “reasonable” and pursue timely resolutions.
  • Fraud: Continued regulatory focus on fraud, identity theft, and other scams (e.g., crypto- or  payment-related scams) as costs to consumers and consumer complaints increase. Areas of  regulatory focus will include:
    • Fraud models, operations/errors, and investigations processes.
    • Insider misconduct and corruption.
    • Consumer protection laws and regulations; consumer complaints, claims, disputes, and  account/transaction freezes.
    • Cybersecurity risk management (including synthetic identity fraud).


What to Watch

Key fairness regulatory actions to watch (including potential associated legal challenges):

  • Community Reinvestment Act (CRA): Interagency (FRB, OCC, and FDIC) rules updating the CRA, including “standardized” metrics and expansion of qualified activities.
  • SEC Market Structure: SEC rules and amendments around market structure, including best execution, disclosure of order execution information, minimum pricing, fees, and  pricing transparency, and order competition.
  • CFPB 1033 Consumer Financial Data Rights (Open Banking): CFPB proposed rule on consumers rights to access their own financial data.
  • CFPB 1071 Small Business Lending Data Rule: Finalized in 2023, CFPB 1071 requires the collection and reporting of small business credit data. A district court ordered  the CFPB not to implement or enforce its 1071 rule against the plaintiffs; additional  litigation is ongoing.

Call to Action…

  • Embed fairness controls: Embed fairness controls across consumer and retail products  and services.
  • Prioritize fairness: Prioritize and embed fairness across the full customer journey.
  • Centralize processes: Execute centralized processes; streamline and simplify customer-focused communications.
  • Enhance equitable treatment: Enhance complaint, claims, and dispute management  processes, technology, and data analytics.
  • Evolve compliance management: Evolve the CMS (across lines) by revisiting the inputs  and weights into risk assessments and new product and service reviews and approvals—all to consider inclusion, access, tangible benefit, and consistent and equitable outcomes.

Dive into our thinking:

Ten Key Regulatory Challenges of 2024

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