Wells Fargo Charged Customers For Duplicate Car Insurance

By Andrea Riquier Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Wells Fargo & Co. charged thousands of customers for car insurance they did not need, leading to delinquencies and repossessions, a New York Times investigation determined. The wrongful insurance charges, which covered collision damage, affected more than 800,000 people who had car loans from the bank. Many borrowers were unaware that an additional charge for the unnecessary insurance was being deducted from their accounts, resulting in overdrawn accounts, damaged credit scores, and bank fees for insufficient funds. The practice came to light as a result of a report Wells itself commissioned, and the bank's head of consumer lending told the Times that the practice would be stopped. But a spokeswoman took issue with some of the numbers in the report. This is the latest in a string of consumer scandals for Wells, including a practice of creating millions of bank and credit card accounts for customers that were never requested. Wells' stock has lost about 0.7% so far this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 10.6%.

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