Wells Fargo Employees Are Said to Improperly Alter Documents
By Hannah Levitt
May 17, 2018, 10:06 AM EDT
Updated on May 17, 2018, 2:57 PM EDT
Wells Fargo & Co. found that employees in its wholesale unit added information to internal customer records without the clients’ knowledge, according to a person briefed on the matter.
The bank discovered the improper activity and reported it to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the matter hadn’t been publicly disclosed. The employees altered the documents in 2017 and earlier this year as they sought to satisfy regulatory demands related to anti-money-laundering controls, according to the Wall Street Journal, which reported the issue earlier Thursday.
Wells Fargo has struggled to move past a wave of scandals, which led to a Federal Reserve ban on increasing assets until the lender fixes missteps. The bank’s first-quarter results were marred by a charge of $800 million tied to a settlement with U.S. regulators. Earlier this month, the bank rolled out a new marketing campaign built around its efforts to regain customers’ trust.
Bryan Hubbard, an OCC spokesman, declined to comment. Wells Fargo spokesman Alan Elias said in an emailed statement that the bank can’t comment on regulatory matters, but that it takes “swift action to correct” any behavior that violates the firm’s values.
“This matter involves documents used for internal purposes,” Elias said. “No customers were negatively impacted, no data left the company, and no products or services were sold as a result.”
The bank’s shares dropped 1.6 percent at 2:40 p.m. in New York trading, the biggest decline in the 24-company KBW Bank Index.
— With assistance by Laura J Kelle
U.S. Audit Cites OCC Lapses in Oversight of Foreclosure Process
By Carter Dougherty – Jun 1, 2012 1:50 PM ET
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency underestimated the risks in bank foreclosure practices from 2008 to 2010 and gave examiners a 13-year-old handbook that didn’t address how securitization affects loan documentation, a Treasury Department audit found.
Treasury’s inspector general’s office reviewed the OCC’s work in the years following the onset of the credit crisis. The period was later found to be rife with abusive foreclosure practices including use of fraudulent documentation by servicers. Five major banks, including JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM),Bank of America Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC), settled claims from 49 states and the federal government for $25 billion on Feb. 9.
“During this time OCC did not consider foreclosure documentation and processing to be an area of significant risk and, as a result, did not focus examination resources on this function,” Jeffrey Dye, the inspector general’s director of banking audits, wrote in the May 31 report.
In missing what “turned out to be serious foreclosure issues,” the OCC relied too heavily on the banks’ own internal quality-control procedures, he said. The bank programs, in turn, focused on loss mitigation and compliance with investor guidelines, not foreclosure documentation, the report found.
The inspector general also faulted the OCC, the primary federal supervisor for national banks, for failing to update its handbook on mortgage banking examinations for 13 years. The guide didn’t address the effects of securitization or new mortgage products that were at the heart of the housing bust, the report concludes.
Comptroller Thomas Curry told the inspector general in a May 15 letter that the OCC manual will be updated, but stressed that the agency issued supplemental guidance to examiners in 2006 and 2007.
OCC spokesman Robert Garsson declined to comment on the Treasury report.
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U.S. Audit Cites OCC Lapses in Oversight of Foreclosure Process – Bloomberg