Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf was harshly criticized Thursday during his congressional testimony about the bank's illegal banking practices. Rep. Keith Rothfus asked Stumpf at Thursday's hearing before the House Financial Services Committee.
At times, the event was a repeat of last week's combative Senate Banking Committee hearing.
Earlier this month the bank acknowledged opening more than two million customer accounts without their consent, incurring fees and other negative financial consequences. "I don't think there's any way to come out of this with the same leadership", said Patricia Lenkov, CEO of Agility Executive Search. "And the L.A. Times article about the scandal was published in December 21, 2013".
He also confirmed that Carrie Tolstedt, Wells Fargo's former head of retail operations, the division that oversaw the creation of the fake debit and credit card accounts, had left the company ahead of her scheduled December 31 retirement date.
The OCC, a division of the Treasury Department, said its $US20 million penalty is for Wells Fargo's failure to honour an interest cap and other violations.
Though he's apologized, Stumpf is still undergoing intense questioning. He and the other Democrats on the panel asked Stumpf on Wednesday to answer a series of 58 questions, including almost two dozen that they said he failed to answer at the hearing last week or for which he promised to provide fuller information.
That fine was "laughable" to a bank the size of Wells Fargo, he said.
"I am anxious for the whole banking community that the public can not and will not trust our banks", she said. Stumpf replied: "In some cases, they did".
Mr. Stumpf told the committee he had suggested his own clawback to Wells Fargo's board, reiterating what he wrote in a letter to bank employees earlier in the week. The bank has thousands of employees in North Carolina.
Maloney said the timing of that trade raised questions of whether Stumpf put himself ahead of customers who had been defrauded, and ahead of the bank in general.
"That's the first I've ever heard of that", Stumpf responded.
Meeks made it clear that he isn't against banks in general.
McHenry added, "You have broken, and your company has broken, longstanding law. You've defrauded your customers".
"Something is going wrong at this bank, and you are the head of it!" "What standards are you holding yourself to that sends a message to the rest of these folks in your organization?" He and the other Democrats on the panel asked Stumpf on Wednesday to answer a series of 58 questions, including almost two dozen that they said he failed to answer at the hearing last week or for which he promised to provide fuller information.
This, in turn, inflated the value of Stumpf's stock-based pay.
"You broke the law. That is. there's never in human history when that has been an ethical 'OK'".
"I'm amazed what you don't know about your business", Williams said.
The panel's chairman, Rep. Jeb Hernsarling, R-Texas, has been sharply critical of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for not identifying the problems sooner. This included announcing that the company is accelerating the process for the elimination of product sales goals for retail banking team members from January 1, 2017 to October 1, 2016.