Wells Fargo & Co. said Monday that its customer checking-account and credit-card openings fell drastically in February versus a year earlier, a continuing trend for the bank following last year’s sales-practices scandal.
REUTERS/Noah BergerWells Fargo doesn't deserve a lot of credit for the way it's handled the fallout from its fake-account scandal, which came to light last September, but the bank is trying to make things right. To this end, every month, Wells Fargo reports nearly two dozen metrics that shed light on the latest activity in its retail branches.
As Wells Fargo continues to grapple with the consequences of its potentially decade-long fake account fiasco, we’re beginning to see what the future might hold for the banking giant: a large loss both financially and in its customer base.
While it won't come as a surprise that Wells Fargo customers were disappointed to learn their bank was embroiled in the biggest banking scandal since the financial crisis which shattered the bank's "folksy" image, so far there were no definitive numbers to frame the post-settlement reaction.
The Wells Fargo fake account fiasco continues to draw the attention of regulators who, just like the bank’s executives, somehow spent years not noticing that Wells Fargo employees were opening up bogus accounts to meet strict sales goals. This morning, the bank confirmed a Security and Exchange Commission probe related to this chicanery.
The typical person in a year or two will hardly remember what got Wells Fargo into so much trouble this year. For the time being, though, the bank's fake-account scandal continues to wreak havoc on its performance.
SewCream/ShutterstockYou would have to spend as much as $3.7 million to earn enough debit or credit card rewards to pay off the typical student loan debt. That's not happening, but you can fairly painlessly nibble away a bit of what you owe using plastic.
A growing number of America’s unbanked and under-banked consumers have been turning to prepaid debit cards as an alternative to checking accounts. Between 2003 and 2012, the total amount of money deposited annually onto these cards increased from $1 billion to $65 billion, and that amount is expected to near $100 million for 2014. But those cards often come with hefty fees and lack protections of other financial products.
Every time you make a plane reservation or rent a car or pay for concert tickets, you're asked to provide a credit card number. Liz Smiley, a social worker in Florida, provides a debit card number instead.Smiley has lived without a credit card for more than four years, and she doesn't miss it a bit.