Not Banking On Wells Fargo


Tanner Hardcastle, Reporter

Wells Fargo, a major business figure in the banking industry, is under fire for recent controversy on the opening of fake accounts on their unknowing customers. Apparently, as many as 1.5 million fake accounts and 500,000 credit cards were opened under customer’s names without the knowledge of these customers, with a great many of these customers being extremely outraged about the situation. The news of the scam is relatively new and there is much more to be unearthed over the coming weeks, but the public does have quite a bit of information so far and what we do know is very scandalous, to say the least. In short, bankers will get a commission for certain actions, usually involving opening checking and savings accounts for customers, as well as opening credit and debit cards, this commission is extra and is not on base salary and most banks will have quotas to fill, such as a certain amount of accounts and cards that bankers need to open each week. The problem, however, is rooted deep within Wells Fargo’s incentive based system turned corrupt, an environment where if certain quotas aren’t met, a stern reprimanding will be received. With quotas usually being very unreasonable, these quotas are hard to fill. What really makes this task an even bigger undertaking, is when given a limited amount of customers in the area that you work in, especially when considering that most banking customers stay with their banks for a multitude of years, so what is a banker to do? Apparently, more bankers than you would think had the brilliant idea of opening new accounts for existing customers without permission or knowledge whatsoever from the account holders themselves. Bankers would also simulate activity between these accounts until they hit their daily and/or weekly quotas so that they could get paid their commissions and transfer the money back to the account holder’s original account. After years of this corruption, customers are certainly bound to find out about such a corrupt system, and consequences will quickly ensue for Wells Fargo. A hearing in front of the senate on Capitol Hill was held for Wells Fargo and it’s Ceo, John G. Stumpf on Sep. 20, 2017. John G. Stumpf attempted to apologize for the company’s recent actions and tried to be very clear that “…there was no orchestrated effort, or scheme as some have called it.”  He faced a slew of criticism and grief. Elizabeth Warren, calling Wells Fargo and John G. Stumpf “…a gutless leadership.” She also added “your definition of accountable is to push the blame to your low-level employees who don’t have the money for a fancy P.R. firm to defend themselves” New Jersey senator, Robert Mendez, declared that “This isn’t the work of 5,300 bad apples, this is the work of sowing seeds that poisoned the orchard.” The public is displaying a massive amount of uproar, targeting the international banking corporation, Wells Fargo. Cheating paying customers for personal gain is not only a terrible business policy but will also tarnish your company’s reputation and destroy the trust of your customer base forever. The recent actions of Wells Fargo also raise questions and concerns about banking and government regulations on banks and bankers, with people asking, “Should there be more regulations enforced on the banking industry, and if so, how?”