Ever since Senator Elizabeth Warren skillfully revealed how Wells executives used predatory cross-selling mandates to whip staff, prey on customers and pump up their personal stock holdings, the Wells Board of Directors (of which CEO Stumpf is also Chariman, let’s not forget) are infighting in the usual game of circle blame.
Since the Senate hearing, we have heard from Wells staff who were fired for bringing the account fraud to management’s attention before the LA Times broke the story in 2013. Stompf is next up in front of the House tomorrow. Word is he’s not contrite and the announcement yesterday of bonus clawbacks proposed for he and other top executives were not his idea.
Not that surprising, as John Kenneth Galbraith famously said: “People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage.” Now there is also a class action lawsuit against the company from shareholders who say they were misled by management on the success of the company’s sales practices. More to come for this company and others like it. Is personal and financial accountability of corporate directors finally coming into vogue?
CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin discusses the ongoing boardroom struggle resulting from the revelations that Wells Fargo employees had been opening free-generating accounts without authorization for years. Here is a direct video link.