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March 8, 2017 | Wells Fargo North: Canadian Banks Cross-Selling Customers into Financial Hell

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:

Further to the revelations last fall that US bank Wells Fargo was driving its employees to cross-sell customers debt and risk products to their financial ruin, we noted that Wells was not unique in its predatory business plan. It is an entire industry of sales-obsessed investment firms/banks posing as “financial advisors” which have increasingly gutted households from the inside out over the past 2 decades.  Today, we have news from whistle blower employees inside Canada’s TD Bank.  See: “I will do anything to meet my goal: TD tellers says customers pay price for ‘unrealistic’ sales goals.

Three TD Bank Group employees are speaking out about what they say is “incredible pressure” to squeeze profits from customers by signing them up for products and services they don’t need.

The longtime employees say their jobs have become similar to that of the stereotypical used car salesman, as they’re pushed to upsell customers to reach rising sales revenue targets.

They say there has always been a sales component to the job, but the demand to meet “unrealistic” quarterly goals has intensified in recent years as profits from low interest rates have dropped and banks became required — after the financial meltdown of 2008 — to keep more capital on hand to protect against a downturn in the market.

Here is a direct audio link to the report on CBC radio today.

This story doesn’t even touch on all the harmful ‘investment’ products and services that are relentlessly cross-sold as recommendations and advice to vulnerable customers through an army of funds, online, retail brokerage and private client services offered by the banks. As we have warned for years, customers are seen as the low-hanging fruit, distribution channel for everything the firm needs to pump and dump for all the corporations they do underwriting work for. And when the products tank each market cycle, the banks then say they were only acting as sales people and the client must bear their own risk and losses. Customers take ‘advice’ from these financial sales conglomerates at great personal peril.

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March 8th, 2017

Posted In: Juggling Dynamite

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