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It may be difficult to remember in the ongoing avalanche of incompetence and worse at Wells Fargo over the past four years, but once upon a time the bank was seen as a the very essence of a well-run organization, at least from the perspective of one very not-well-run organization. And given all of the scandals and fines and non-scandal-related disasters and indigestion that emerge on a seemingly weekly basis, it may also be difficult to remember that first giant deposit in the continuing hailstorm of shit, the whole fake account thing. This has taken some time to unwind, possibly in part because not even Wells Fargo is sure how many of its accounts were legitimately opened by a customer and how many were unwittingly opened in that customer’s name to meet some quota. But they’re getting there: Last month, the Office of Comptroller of the Currency put a formal end to former CEO John Stumpf’s already quite over banking career. And now, what’s left of the Justice Department, along with the SEC, is ready to accept all of those billions Wells has been putting aside for this very purpose.

Wells Fargo is preparing to settle with federal prosecutors and the Securities and Exchange Commission over the widespread abuse of customers in its banking, auto lending and mortgage businesses, according to two people familiar with the matter…. The size of the penalties could not immediately be determined, but Wells Fargo has set aside $3.1 billion to pay legal costs related to the sales practice matters.

That’s a lot to be wrapping up at once. But, of course, this is Wells Fargo, and so the story will not end with this novelty-sized check.

While the settlements would resolve yearslong investigations by the agencies, they would not end the bank’s regulatory woes. For two years, the bank has been operating under growth restrictions imposed by the Federal Reserve, which has said it will not release the bank from those constraints until its leaders can demonstrate that they have restructured its operations to prevent similar abuses.

Wells Fargo Is Said to Be Near Settlements Over Sales Practices [NYT]


Wells Fargo Bless this Mess

Lying To, Overcharging Customers Sure Seems Like Wells Fargo’s Primary Strategy

Whether you’re a simple homeowner or a sophisticated investment banking client, it’s just the way Wells does business.

(Getty Images)

JPMorgan Pays Whistleblower To Shut Up, Like It Should Have Done A Year Ago

You know, before she said all of that stuff about breaking all of those promises it made to the Justice Department.

By user Siqbal (Originally uploaded to the English Wikipedia) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

You Didn’t Think Wells Fargo Could Get Away With Just Firing Those Forex Bankers, Did You?

The Justice Department is cooking up a big, fat s**tburger for Tim Sloan & co.

Wells Fargo.Insane

Wells Fargo Employees Still Know How To (Fraudulently) Gussy Up An Application

And like some of their bad apple brethren are thusly former Wells Fargo employees now.

Wells Fargo.Insane

Wells Fargo Would Like To Keep Its Rigged Arbitration Victory, Please

I mean, a little panel-tampering and light perjury can’t possibly render one of those things moot, right?

Wells Fargo.Insane

Wells Fargo Employees Turn Congress Into The HR Department They Wish They Had

But don’t worry, little stagecoach drivers: Jamie Dimon’s son-in-law is figuring out how to fix all of those broken wooden wheels.

Wells Fargo.Insane

Seven Million Dollar Fines Levied On Wells Fargo Don’t Make Anti-Money Laundering Compliance Sound Sacrosanct

Charlie Scharf is probably not even made aware of penalties under eight figures.