"The biggest victims of Wells Fargo's scam [are] the class of victims that were fired because they did not meet these cross sell quotas by engaging in the fraudulent scam that would line the CEO's pockets".
Courthouse News Servicereports bank employees filed a class action suit in Los Angeles Thursday, accusing the bank of imposing strict quotas on employees and pressuring workers to boost eight banking products - whether customers wanted them or not.
Expert say the disclosure, which has caused Wells Fargo's stock to decline almost 10 percent, is one of the bank's most hard periods in years - and a big payout to Stumpf could make matters worse.
Wells Fargo was fined $185 million by regulators earlier this month for fraudulently opening over two million deposit and credit card accounts that were allegedly not authorised by customers.
The Wall Street Journal, citing an unnamed source, reported that Wells Fargo's board could move as soon as Tuesday to get back money from and current CEO John Stumpf and Carrie Tolstedt, the bank's former head of retail banking.
More than 5,300 employees have been fired for the unethical sales since 2011, but they have been mostly lower-ranking workers, including many who say they felt pressured to bend the rules to meet the bank's aggressive sales goals.
While executives at the top benefited from the activity, the blame landed on thousands of $12-per-hour employees who tried to meet the quotas and were often required to work off the clock to do so, the lawsuit said.
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Stock awards that haven't vested can be clawed back when an executive is negligent or the person's misconduct harms the bank's reputation, according to Wells Fargo's compensation policy. Employees described a near-obsessive focus from managers on a daily - or even hourly - basis about whether they were meeting the targets. Her total compensation, including accumulated stock and options earned over her 27 years at the bank, could run about $90 million, according to a letter Wells Fargo sent senators last week.
Under intense questioning from both Democrats and Republicans, Stumpf said the bank employees who were terminated included "managers, and managers of managers, and an area president".
To see more of the video interview from Nomi Prins speaking on bank CEO fallout from Wells Fargo on Democracy Now!
Stumpf's actions so far - covering his initial response through last week's Senate hearing - have been "reactionary versus leading", Mayo wrote.
The survey also found that 71% of Americans think that Wells Fargo is an "untrustworthy bank" according to SurveyMonkey and 80% said if they were a Wells Fargo customer they would consider closing their accounts. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) said that Stumpf should resign and face a criminal investigation.
Shares of Wells Fargo have fallen almost 10 percent since the settlement announcement September 8.