Two weeks after Wells Fargo said it was reviewing some overcharges and incorrect wealth management fees, as well as possibly “inappropriate” referrals and recommendations affecting 401(k) rollovers to its wealth unit, the role of regulators in the probe of these practices is becoming clearer.
The Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission are involved, and agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation have been speaking with some employees of the wealth unit in Phoenix, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal on Friday.
Wells Fargo declined to comment on the matter, but referred to a statement in its annual report: “Our top priority is to rebuild trust with all of our stakeholders. … We are making significant progress in our work to identify and fix any issues, make things right, and build a better, stronger company.”
The DOJ asked Wells Fargo for an independent review of practices at its wealth unit after whistleblowers revealed problems there, the Journal said, adding that the current investigation by the DOJ and SEC is separate from the bank’s own inquiry. Employees have pointed to issues with the bank’s own investment products.