The fallout from Wells Fargo’s massive consumer fraud scheme continues to unfold. After it was discovered that their employees were opening thousands of phony accounts and charging their customers extra fees, the financial giant was forced to pay a huge settlement, thanks to Sen. Elizabeth Warren and the Financial Consumer Protection Bureau. But the repercussions aren’t stopping there. The state of California has suspended its business with the bank for a year, and more are following suit.
The city of Chicago has announced it is suspending Wells Fargo from doing business in their city for one year. “I hope this action by the city of Chicago will echo around the nation and make it clear to other institutions this conduct is unacceptable” said City Council Finance Committee Alderman Edward Burke.
On Monday, Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs suspended $30 billion in state investment activity with the bank and the city treasurer will divest $25 million in Wells Fargo securities.
It’s telling that Republican members of Congress are furious at Wells Fargo for making it harder for them to argue for deregulating financial institutions, so we should be extra thankful that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau caught this.
If this is the kind of predatory extortion that Wall Street will engage in so casually, just a few years after the sent our nation and the global economy into a recession with their reckless casino capitalism, it’s clear they haven’t learned their lessons.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.