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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
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Wells Fraudo Bank

This forum needs an infusion of non-red pill inspired rage, so here we go.

So CEO John Stumpf got his stumpf removed and handed to him on a dinner plate yesterday by Elizabeth Warren. No great fan of hers am I, yet I was falling out of my seat cheering her on as she savaged this scumbag on Capitol Hill.

2% of Wells' global workforce was engaged in defrauding their customers. That's a lot of people. And when you break it down further and realize that those 2% were all concentrated in one line of business within the bank, it's a MUCH higher percentage of retail branch employees.

I've worked in banks for years. This kind of widespread corruption does not go unnoticed at management levels. It STARTS at management levels.

Now we're finding out that WF has been firing whistleblowers who called in to their own ethics line to sound the alarm. Ethics lines are not answered in branches, they're answered at the corporate level. That means the corporation was notified, and the corporation made the choice to retaliate against these people.

I think Warren is right that Stumpf and other execs need to start being held criminally liable for this kind of stuff. This is demonstrably a corporate culture issue. You just don't have 5000+ "rogue" employees who randomly start defrauding customers all at the same time.


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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 10:40 AM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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This forum needs an infusion of non-red pill inspired rage, so here we go.

So CEO John Stumpf got his stumpf removed and handed to him on a dinner plate yesterday by Elizabeth Warren. No great fan of hers am I, yet I was falling out of my seat cheering her on as she savaged this scumbag on Capitol Hill.

2% of Wells' global workforce was engaged in defrauding their customers. That's a lot of people. And when you break it down further and realize that those 2% were all concentrated in one line of business within the bank, it's a MUCH higher percentage of retail branch employees.

I've worked in banks for years. This kind of widespread corruption does not go unnoticed at management levels. It STARTS at management levels.

Now we're finding out that WF has been firing whistleblowers who called in to their own ethics line to sound the alarm. Ethics lines are not answered in branches, they're answered at the corporate level. That means the corporation was notified, and the corporation made the choice to retaliate against these people.

I think Warren is right that Stumpf and other execs need to start being held criminally liable for this kind of stuff. This is demonstrably a corporate culture issue. You just don't have 5000+ "rogue" employees who randomly start defrauding customers all at the same time.
I think Wells Fargo management is guilty of being incredibly stupid. If you set up unrealistic goals and make employees keeping their jobs dependent on meeting them, they're going to do whatever it takes to meet those goals and keep their jobs.

Did upper management know damn well what was going on and encourage it? Why would they? Most of the bogus accounts that were set up didn't even have fees associated with them (the employees obviously chose these because there was less chance of customers noticing and reporting it). The small amount of fees generated through this activity was completely insubstantial. Any intelligent CEO would have seen that the excess fees generated in no way compensated for the risk of this being discovered by customers.

Now show me that out-sized profits were gained and I'll start worrying about criminal behavior.

Stupidity isn't illegal.
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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 10:51 AM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

The guy is a moron, and got completely roasted in front of Congress. I think the real point to think about that he got blasted on, no upper management was fired. In fact, the one upper management individual (Carrie Tolstedt) was allowed to take retirement instead of being fired while the lower level workers were fired. Even more amusing, when asked why Carrie Tolstedt wasn't fired, Stumpf kept pointing to her body of work (no pun intended). So basically, he is saying that all of her previous accomplishments more then offset the fact that she oversaw fraud. What a great message to send...
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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 10:58 AM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

Stupidity is still legal, but growth in customer base is a key benchmark investors use to assess performance...
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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 11:09 AM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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I think Wells Fargo management is guilty of being incredibly stupid. If you set up unrealistic goals and make employees keeping their jobs dependent on meeting them, they're going to do whatever it takes to meet those goals and keep their jobs.

Did upper management know damn well what was going on and encourage it? Why would they? Most of the bogus accounts that were set up didn't even have fees associated with them (the employees obviously chose these because there was less chance of customers noticing and reporting it). The small amount of fees generated through this activity was completely insubstantial. Any intelligent CEO would have seen that the excess fees generated in no way compensated for the risk of this being discovered by customers.

Now show me that out-sized profits were gained and I'll start worrying about criminal behavior.

Stupidity isn't illegal.
All to often it's the guy just trying to keep his job that is held accountable. It should be the ones that made the ridiculous goals or quotas that should be held accountable but their are the ones allowed to escape punishment. Getting rid of the CEO should be just the beginning, all Sr. Management who made these decisions should be not only fired but should face charges and be held personally responsible. Junior staff should keep their jobs and be provided with responsible managers. For big companies like this, big problems are just a game, nothing serious for them, just blame your underlings and admit to no knowledge of the situation.

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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 11:23 AM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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Getting rid of the CEO should be just the beginning, all Sr. Management who made these decisions should be ... fired
Agreed

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Getting rid of the CEO should be just the beginning, all Sr. Management who made these decisions should face charges and be held personally responsible.
What charges? Responsible for what? Being bad managers? Firing people is how people are held accountable for being bad at their job.

I guess if it could be proven that a manager had direct knowledge of this there might be appropriate charges to bring.

If it's just that we think that they "must have known", that's not evidence in criminal court.
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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 11:24 AM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

Between this and Mylan, it has been like the Super Bowl for Congress these past few days lol
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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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Stupidity is still legal, but growth in customer base is a key benchmark investors use to assess performance...
And this was the motivation. Wells touted itself as cross-sell masters, using products-per-customer as a benchmark to inflate their stock value. It was never about driving fee revenue, it was about stock manipulation.

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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:39 PM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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And this was the motivation. Wells touted itself as cross-sell masters, using products-per-customer as a benchmark to inflate their stock value. It was never about driving fee revenue, it was about stock manipulation.
Which Stumpf denied until the members started reading back transcripts from his investor calls lol
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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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I think Wells Fargo management is guilty of being incredibly stupid. If you set up unrealistic goals and make employees keeping their jobs dependent on meeting them, they're going to do whatever it takes to meet those goals and keep their jobs.

Did upper management know damn well what was going on and encourage it? Why would they? Most of the bogus accounts that were set up didn't even have fees associated with them (the employees obviously chose these because there was less chance of customers noticing and reporting it). The small amount of fees generated through this activity was completely insubstantial. Any intelligent CEO would have seen that the excess fees generated in no way compensated for the risk of this being discovered by customers.

Now show me that out-sized profits were gained and I'll start worrying about criminal behavior.

Stupidity isn't illegal.
The amount of checks, audits and controls put into banks over the last several years would astound you. NOTHING goes unnoticed in a bank anymore, especially at the branch level where the risk for violating federal regs is highest. And again, WF had multiple whistleblowers reporting what was going on from across the country. Not only did they not do anything about it, they retaliated against the whistleblowers. This wasn't ignorance or laziness, this was a calculated plan.


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post #11 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:47 PM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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This is demonstrably a corporate culture issue. You just don't have 5000+ "rogue" employees who randomly start defrauding customers all at the same time.
Unfortunately, there are other large banks with the same practices. I agree that this is a serious issue and upper and middle managers need to be prosecuted. Like her or dislike her politically, I'm happy to watch those involved answering to Elizabeth Warren.
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post #12 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:51 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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Unfortunately, there are other large banks with the same practices. I agree that this is a serious issue and upper and middle managers need to be prosecuted. Like her or dislike her politically, I'm happy to watch those involved answering to Elizabeth Warren.
I briefly worked for a now defunct (thank God) bank that routinely set unattainable goals for it's employees. Literally the only way to keep your job was to commit yourself to gobs of unpaid overtime. If you actually logged the hours required to complete your work, you'd be fired. If you failed to complete your work, you'd be fired. My entire office would clock in at 8am, clock out at 5pm, and go home around 9pm every night.

Did management know? Yeah, because they were sitting in their offices watching us, while they approved our timecards.

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post #13 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 01:13 PM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

Another area where Stumpf blew it, he kept stating that he (and by him also meaning Wells Fargo) care more about making sure customers solely have accounts they need instead of focusing on the # of accounts. Yet once again, in the investor calls, the focus was on the # of accounts per customer, and how that # had grown (I think as of recent the average was about 8 accounts per customer).

The problem both Stumpf and Bresch (Mylan) had, while they are telling one story to Congress, their direct quotes and commentary from their investor calls tell an entirely different story.

Last edited by EllisRedding; 09-22-2016 at 01:21 PM.
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post #14 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 01:58 PM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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Another area where Stumpf blew it, he kept stating that he (and by him also meaning Wells Fargo) care more about making sure customers solely have accounts they need instead of focusing on the # of accounts. Yet once again, in the investor calls, the focus was on the # of accounts per customer, and how that # had grown (I think as of recent the average was about 8 accounts per customer).

The problem both Stumpf and Bresch (Mylan) had, while they are telling one story to Congress, their direct quotes and commentary from their investor calls tell an entirely different story.
I can believe that upper management knew what was going on but ignored it because it was making investors happy.

In a way, they would have been in the same position lower level employees were in; committing fraud in order to make their bosses (their investors) happy.

They should all be fired (and of course, they won't be). Which leads to the question, why are their investors (the owners of the company) not calling for them to be fired?

Still don't really see a basis for criminal charges though.

Last edited by Buddy400; 09-22-2016 at 02:03 PM.
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post #15 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 02:02 PM
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Re: Wells Fraudo Bank

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I briefly worked for a now defunct (thank God) bank that routinely set unattainable goals for it's employees.
I doubt that's unique to banks.

I worked in a restaurant that emphasized sales of wine & desserts and a shoe store that emphasized sales of socks and purses.

Employees in each case gamed the system to do whatever was required to get the "right" results.
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