The Obama regime this week announced it is soliciting complaints from consumers “encountering problems with loans from online lenders.” It’s a not-so-subtle hint regulators are planning action against the fast-growing industry.

Online, or “marketplace,” loan originations mushroomed to $12 billion in 2014 from $1 billion in 2010, driving competition among lenders and providing more choices and possible cost savings on various loan products. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants to be sure that consumers are informed when they shop for a loan online and fully understand what they are signing up for.

“The CFPB’s objectives in taking these actions are questionable, since consumers already could complain about marketplace loans using the CFPB’s existing loan categories,” Scott M. Pearson of Ballard Spahr LLP said. “Rather than seeking to provide additional protection to consumers, perhaps the CFPB’s primary objective is to warn marketplace lenders that they are clearly on the CFPB’s radar screen.”

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