Slideshow 'Pantheon of Weasels': Comments of the Week

Published
  • September 16 2016, 12:20pm EDT
9 Images Total

American Banker readers share their views on the most pressing banking topics of the week. Comments are excerpted from reader response sections of AmericanBanker.com articles and our social media platforms.

On whether the Wells Fargo fraud allegations undercut industry-supported efforts to reform the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:

"The industry looks at the Wells Fargo disaster as a speed bump in its effort to declaw the CFPB instead of as one more wake-up call. That says all that America needs to know. Banking joins Big Tobacco and Big Sugar in the pantheon of weasels."

Related Article: CFPB Reform 'Dead on Arrival' Thanks to Wells Fargo

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On thousands of Wells Fargo employees allegedly committing what amounted to bank fraud:

"Why don't bankers GO TO PRISON rather than paying fines, which will be absorbed as business expenses?"

Related Article: CFPB Reform 'Dead on Arrival' Thanks to Wells Fargo


On higher-level executives appearing to avoid repercussions from the Wells cross-selling scandal:

"Too high up the food chain 'to know' or be held accountable. Not too high to earn valuable bonuses from the results. TBTF banking chiefs must gather to chant 'make it rain' and the cash comes flooding in the door. Must be the only place in the world where it rains upwards with no chance of penalty. Does anyone think those bonuses will be retracted for those at the top? Not hardly! Too big to fail, too big to jail."

Related Article: Why Aren't Exec Heads Rolling at Wells Fargo?


On the need for regulators to coordinate cybersecurity enforcement (via <a href="https://twitter.com/pascalbouvier/status/775520838506471424" target="_blank">Twitter</a>):

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On how to make sure incentives don't encourage bad behavior:

"Where does the financial incentive stop being perverse?"

Related Article: Wells Is Exhibit A of Employee Incentive Failures


Disagreeing with the praise for the CFPB in fining Wells Fargo:

"The bank's primary regulator should have pursued this long ago. This is symptomatic of what's wrong in Washington: one agency doesn't do its job so another agency is created."

Related Article: CFPB Reform 'Dead on Arrival' Thanks to Wells Fargo


Another reader takes issue with giving the CFPB credit for going after Wells Fargo:

"Why is CFPB getting applauded by Dems for its role in fining Wells? Despite being embedded at Wells as compliance regulator during this period, CFPB didn't; (i) prevent the consumer abuse from occurring, (ii) discover the abuse (LA County did), or (iii) provide any guidance to industry on how to prevent it from occurring in the future. By all accounts, Wells has a world class risk management structure, but we don't know why this risk management failure occurred. Where's the lesson learned?"

Related Article: Dem Lawmakers Call for Wells' Stumpf to Testify on Banking Fraud

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On Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf blaming employees for failing to live up to the firm's values, which are listed on the bank's website:

"Values are not what you post on your website. They are reflected in attitudes and actions."

Related Article: Can Wells' Stumpf Survive Storm Over Phony Accounts?