Thousands of Complaints Suggest Phony Account Issues are Not Limited to Wells Fargo

The news that Wells Fargo secretly created over two million accounts generated outrage across the country.

Wells Fargo WFC, -3.05% said it regrets and takes responsibility for “any instances where customers may have received a product that they did not request.” It’s refunded $2.6 million, or an average of $25, to customers who were impacted.

But a look at a database of customer complaints finds that issues of account openings and closings are not limited to that bank — raising at least the possibility that the practice could go on elsewhere. The database, from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, shows over 30,000 complaints on the issue of “account opening, closing or management.”

Two senators, in a letter on Monday to CFPB Director Richard Cordray, asked whether the agency has looked into the question of whether the practice goes on at other institutions.

The complaints are against lenders big and small, and, not surprisingly, there are thousands of complaints lodged against the major institutions. Under the “account opening, closing or management” heading, Bank of America BAC, -1.79%  had the highest number of complaints, at 4,901, followed by Wells Fargo at 4,450, J.P. Morgan Chase JPM, -1.24%  at 3,169 and Citi C, -1.99%  at 2,260, a MarketWatch analysis has found.

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