June 10, 2022

Wells Fargo Is Under Federal Investigation For Conducting Fake Job Interviews Of Minority Candidates, Report Says

According to the New York Times, federal civil rights prosecutors are now investigating Wells Fargo’s hiring practices.

The launch comes weeks after we reported that some Wells Fargo managers had conducted fake interviews with Black and female job applicants.

Seven current and former employees, including one former executive, told The Times that they were instructed to interview women and people of color for already filled roles.

These efforts, they said, appeared to be a way to show a record of diversity efforts rather than actually hire diverse candidates. The current Wells Fargo employees also told The Times that the fake interviews had been conducted as recently as this year. 

Wells Fargo Executive, Joe Bruno, also told The New York Times that he complained to management about the staged interviews that he deemed inappropriate.

He alleges that his claims about the interviews being morally and ethically wrong were dismissed. As a further consequence, Bruno believes he was terminated due to speaking out against the practice.

In a statement about Bruno, a Wells Fargo spokesperson told Insider that the company investigated The Times’ claims and “could not corroborate the claims as factual.”

But now, it’s been reported that there’s an ongoing federal investigation. The share decline has also reportedly accelerated after the allegations were made.

The stock fell 4.4% to $42.67 in regular New York trading, a steeper drop than the 2.4% slide by the S&P 500 Index. Wells Fargo has fallen about 11% this year.

In a statement about the federal investigation, the company told New York Times: “No one should be put through an interview without a real chance of receiving an offer, period,” the firm said in the statement. “The diverse slate guidelines we put in place are meant to increase diverse representation across the company and we can see meaningful results in our hiring data since 2020.”

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Abbianca Makoni

Abbianca Makoni is a content executive and writer at POCIT! She has years of experience reporting on critical issues affecting diverse communities around the globe.