Wells warns of higher foreclosure suit costs

* Bank says costs could be $1.7 bln higher – filing

* Raises worst-case estimate by $500 mln

* Increase due to higher possible foreclosure case costs (Adds byline, company comment, detail on foreclosure investigations)

CHARLOTTE, N.C., May 6 (Reuters) – Wells Fargo & Co (WFC.N) on Friday raised its worst-case estimate for litigation losses by 42 percent to $1.7 billion because of its exposure to foreclosure-related legal issues.

The San Francisco-based bank’s latest loss projection, disclosed in its first-quarter financial report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, increased by $500 million from $1.2 billion in the previous quarter.

A company spokeswoman said the increase was due to foreclosure-related matters. She declined to elaborate.

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