It was only a matter of time before the recent Wells Fargo scandal involving the creation of more than 1.5 million phony accounts was on the receiving end of one of John Oliver’s famously scathing news break-downs, and viewers were treated to his take on Sunday’s Last Week Tonight.
Oliver was quick to criticize Wells Fargo for having its employees remove money from customer’s accounts without their permission, secretly open new bank and credit card accounts, and charge the customers fees on the accounts they did not know they had.
“That’s right: Wells Fargo employees created fake email addresses to enroll customers in hidden accounts, creating PIN numbers the customers didn’t even know existed,” Oliver said. “And hidden fees are bad enough without being hidden inside hidden accounts with hidden PIN numbers made with hidden email addresses. Because that’s like a Russian nesting doll where the last doll is giving you the middle finger.”
But how is it that so many Wells Fargo employees all had the same idea at the same time? Wells Fargo apparently incentivized employees to create the accounts, with managers even teaching employees exactly how to do it.
“Wow, so the fraud was baked in,” Oliver said. “Which, I believe, is the title of Martha Stewart’s autobiography.”
Wells Fargo was fined $185 million for their wrongdoings, though the sum had some outraged considering the bank made $23 billion in profit just last year. Should Stumpf resign, he would walk away with a $200 million pay-out.
“The only way that could possibly be okay is if they put that money in 20 million fake accounts of $10 each and never ever tell him about them,” Oliver said.
Watch the full clip below.