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October 21, 2016 | Wells Employee Describes Bank ‘Lions Hunting’ Customer ‘Zebras’

Danielle Park

Portfolio Manager and President of Venable Park Investment Counsel ( Ms Park is a financial analyst, attorney, finance author and regular guest on North American media. She is also the author of the best-selling myth-busting book "Juggling Dynamite: An insider's wisdom on money management, markets and wealth that lasts," and a popular daily financial blog:

More excellent evidence on why banks must be run as deposit taking utilities and not allowed to cross-sell financial products to their customers.  These institutions are presently criminal, predatory and socially destructive franchises that are gutting the financial strength of families who look to them for  ‘advice’.  So far we, the people, have let them get away with it, while paying a steep social and financial cost for our apathy.  See “Lions hunting zebras’: Ex-Wells Fargo banker describes abuses:

“Mexican immigrants who speak little English. Older adults with memory problems. College students opening their first bank accounts. Small-business owners with several lines of credit.

These were some of the customers whom bankers at Wells Fargo, trying to meet steep sales goals and avoid being fired, targeted for unauthorized or unnecessary accounts, according to legal filings and statements from former bank employees.

”The analogy I use was that it was like lions hunting zebras,” said Kevin Pham, a former Wells Fargo employee in San Jose, Calif., who saw it happening at the branch where he worked. ‘They would look for the weakest, the ones that would put up the least resistance…”Bankers wanted the quickest, easiest sale — the low-hanging fruit.”

Further to my article in September about credit-pushers plaguing college campuses, see Bank cross-selling bankrupting our nations, the Wells ex-employee confirms why young people are sitting ducks for predatory sales:

…college campuses were considered prime spots for employees seeking to rack up new accounts because younger customers had a tendency to trust a banker’s advice.”

Fortunately some individuals and institutions are revolted enough to use their customer weight to boycott offenders and move their business elsewhere:

A group that coalesced on Facebook has declared Nov. 12 National Close Your Wells Fargo Account Day.  Some people are not waiting until then.

Michael Masterson, who lives in Concord, Calif., posted on the group’s Facebook page about refinancing his mortgage this week to move it away from Wells Fargo.

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October 21st, 2016

Posted In: Juggling Dynamite

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