America’s most vilified bank CEO since the financial crisis has just been expelled from the industry.
Wells Fargo’s ex-chief executive John Stumpf has been barred from working in banking for the rest of his life and has been ordered to pay a $17.5 million fine as punishment for his role in a fake-account scandal that duped millions of Wells Fargo customers.
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced Thursday that it has reached an agreement with Stumpf and two other former bank executives. Five more are being charged by the OCC, including Wells’ disgraced former head of community banking, Carrie Tolstedt, who was a key figure in the scandal. Regulators are seeking a lifetime ban for Tolstedt and a fine of $25 million.
“The actions announced by the OCC today reinforce the agency’s expectations that management and employees of national banks and federal savings associations provide fair access to financial services, treat customers fairly, and comply with applicable laws and regulations,” Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting said in a statement.
Stumpf became a target for public fury after it was revealed in September 2016 that the bank would pay a $185 million fine after admitting that a culture of aggressive sales quotas had led to millions of fake bank and credit cards being opened in the names of actual Wells Fargo customers. That scandal was followed by others, including Wells Fargo charging customers for car insurance they didn’t need, resulting in some vehicles being repossessed.
The fallout from the scandals echoed for months, resulting in the resignations of Stumpf, Tolstedt and dozens of other Wells executives. Thousands of bank employees were fired and the bank was placed under a consent order by the Federal Reserve, restricting its ability to operate without government approval.
Stumpf’s replacement, Tim Sloan, who was CFO during the time the fake accounts were created, announced his resignation last March after regulators expressed no confidence in his ability to turn the troubled bank around, as The Post has previously reported. Sloan is not among the names being charged by the OCC.
“The OCC’s actions are consistent with my belief that we should hold ourselves and individuals accountable,” current Wells Fargo CEO Charles Scharf said in an email to staff. “This was inexcusable. Our customers and you all deserved more from the leadership of this company.”
Scharf also made it clear that the bank will not be making any more delayed compensation payments to the former executives named by the OCC.