Wells Fargo is America's largest bank and it also leads the nation's banks for scandals, having stolen from rich people, poor people, veterans, active-service military personnel, homeowners, small businesses, etc, as well as 2,000,000 ordinary customers who had fraudulent accounts opened in their names in order to bleed them of transaction fees, sometimes at the expense of their good credit and even their financial solvency.
After handing John Stumpf (the CEO who presided over the first wave of scandals) a massive, multi-million-dollar payment to punish him for his wrongdoing, the company elevated CFO Timothy J Sloan to the CEO's chair, in the hopes that the public would believe that the former CFO could be sold as a change agent if he was enough of a bland nonentity. Unfortunately for the board, Sloan bumbled through a series of ever-more-grotesque scandals until it became evident that the board's only choice would be to make an example of him by giving him millions of dollars, too. Now he is out and the board is on the hunt for his replacement.
On CNN, Matt Egan ruminates on how a criminal enterprise of the scale and notoriety of Wells Fargo can hire a leader that will allow it to continue to commit crimes without getting punished or being hated by the public. In particular, investors are anxious to find a CEO who can convince the Federal Researve to lift the company's sole meaningful punishment for its consistent wrongdoing: a cap on how big it can grow.
Egan speculates that a new leader may be recruited from noted industry outsiders Goldman Sachs, whose willingness to break with traditional financial orthodoxy in pursuit of ethical business is the stuff of legend.
Several former Goldman Sachs (GS) execs have been floated as potential CEOs. Gary Cohn, former Goldman president and Trump administration economic adviser, has previously denied he's interested in the job. Ditto for former Goldman Sachs president Harvey Schwartz.
Wall Street analysts have speculated that Richard Davis, the former CEO of US Bank (USB), could be a good fit for San Francisco-based Wells Fargo.