In the wake of its major scandal involving millions of unauthorized accounts opened in its customers’ names, Wells Fargo is “clawing back” more than $75 million from former top executives. The bank announced the effort in April after an internal investigation found that its former executives did not act quickly enough to look into the wrongdoing when it was brought to their attention.
In addition to the claw-backs, the bank’s recently released report details how overly aggressive sales practices and demands in the company’s Community Banking division placed enormous pressure on employees to sell unnecessary products to customers. This led some to open the unauthorized accounts in a practice that lasted about a decade.
The report came after investigations led by several independent board members of the bank, working in conjunction with a third-party investigator. The report was harsh on Wells Fargo’s former executives, which it blamed for allowing an “atmosphere of unrealistic expectations” and attempting to hide information related to the scandal.
To date, the bank has been hit with more than $185 million in fines from several federal and local agencies, including the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Roughly 5,300 employees quit or were fired in the aftermath of the scandal, although nearly 1,000 have been rehired since.
Thanks to the work of some whistleblowers, federal investigators were able to uncover Wells Fargo’s illegal activities and prevent further harm to customers. If you are aware of ethical or legal violations happening within your organization, explore your legal options by consulting a dedicated attorney at Whistleblower Law for Managers in Dallas, Texas.