Rep. Maloney Questions Wells Fargo’s Stumpf on Stock Sales and Reports of Abuse Dating to 2007
WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney, senior member on the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, questioned Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf about the suspicious timing regarding his selling of Wells Fargo stock in late 2013 and reports of employees opening fraudulent accounts dating back to 2007, during today’s hearing on Capitol Hill. You can watch the full exchange between the Congresswoman and Mr. Stumpf here.
Following her exchange with Mr. Stumpf, Rep. Maloney released the following statement:
“More than 5,000 Wells Fargo employees were fired and held accountable for creating more than 2 million fake accounts without their customers’ permission but this mass firing does not address the need for the bank’s leadership to be held accountable for their actions. I am deeply troubled that Mr. Stumpf sold $13 million worth of Wells Fargo stock on the open market on October 13, 2013 – just months after whistleblowers first contact the CFPB about the bank’s fraudulent actions, seemingly cashing in before rectifying the situation and informing clients that their accounts were compromised.
“Additionally, Wells Fargo has only pledged to a review of practices and accounts dating back to 2009 while we have accusations that these illegal practices go as far back as 2007. Mr. Stumpf must commit to a review that protects all customers and reviews all the information and indications of fraud, no matter how far back they date.
“Wells Fargo’s leadership must be held accountable for this systemic abuse of their customers’ trust.”
The Congresswoman’s questions, as prepared, are below:
Question 1: We know now that whistleblowers first contacted the CFPB about the fraud at Wells Fargo in mid-2013. You said in your Senate testimony that you first found out about the fake accounts in late 2013. And the L.A. Times article about this scandal was published on December 21st, 2013.
I have right here your Form 4 filing — which I’d like to submit for the record — that shows that on October 30th, 2013, you sold $13 million worth of Wells Fargo stock on the open market. That is by far the largest open-market sale of Wells Fargo stock that you’ve made in your 9 years as CEO.
So my question is: Did you dump $13 million dollars of Wells Fargo stock — which you did through your family trust — right after you found out that your bank had been fraudulently opening hundreds of thousands of scam accounts?
Question 2: Mr. Stumpf, you have said that Wells Fargo is conducting a review of all accounts going back to 2009, in order to identify any scam accounts. But last week in the Senate, when you were asked if you would extend the review back to before 2009, you refused to commit to extending the review back even earlier. If you were presented with evidence that Wells was engaged in some of these same illegal practices prior to 2009, would that change your mind about extending the review?