Consumer banking giant Wells Fargo was ordered Tuesday to pay $3.7 billion in fines and refunds by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
It was the largest payout to date against the bank, which has spent years attempting to rehabilitate itself after a series of scandals going back to 2016. In that year, Wells employees were discovered to have opened millions of accounts illegally in order to meet unrealistic sales goals. In 2018 the bank paid out a $1 billion penalty to cover widespread consumer law violations.
On Tuesday the CFPB ordered the bank to repay $2 billion to consumers over numerous illegal fees and interest on auto loans and mortgages. The bank also incorrectly applied overdraft fees against consumers’ savings and checking accounts, according to the CFPB which also slapped Wells Fargo with a $1.7 billion penalty.
The CFPB said the violations impacted more than 16 million consumers.
The bank remains under a Federal Reserve order initially enacted in 2018 forbidding it from growing any larger until the Fed deems that its corporate culture problems are resolved.