Rhode Island Treasurer Seth Magaziner was one of 23 investors that have secured a commitment from banking giant Wells Fargo to publish a business standards report on the root causes of past and present fraudulent activities, along with plans to address the systemic failures which allowed unethical and illegal practices to flourish.
"It is imperative that Wells Fargo be transparent and forthright about the corporate culture and business practices that lead to the bank engaging in massive fraud against its own customers," said Treasurer Magaziner. "The bank must continue to take steps toward real reform in order to re-establish trust with stakeholders".
Following months of engagement by concerned investors, including Treasurer Magaziner, Wells Fargo's Board of Directors agreed to publish the requested report by October 2018. Treasurer Magaziner met personally with Wells Fargo board members and executives, including CEO Tim Sloan, as part of this successful effort.
On behalf of Treasurer Magaziner and other concerned investors, Sr. Nora Nash, of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, read a statement during Wells Fargo's annual meeting, which was held yesterday in Des Moines, Iowa.
The statement reads, in part: "Through reckless and imprudent business decisions, the misguided actions of staff and multiple failures in leadership, this company has harmed millions of its customers. People across the country have had to confront profound difficulties - they have lost their homes, businesses and, in no small measure, their dignity - all because the company failed them. These people, your customers, who are guilty only of having trusted Wells Fargo to do the right thing, deserve to be validated, they deserve an honest reckoning of the events that led to these transgressions."
Treasurer Magaziner, on behalf of the members of the Rhode Island pension system, also cast votes in favor of a shareholder proposals with Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) which request additional disclosure about employee incentive compensation programs, incorporating social responsibility performance measures as a broader component of executive compensation, as well as a proposal to reduce the ownership threshold for shareholders to call a special meeting.
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Evan England, Director of Communications (401) 222-2240 | (401) 439-2199 (mobile) firstname.lastname@example.org