Wells Fargo: Too Big to Jail?

Everyone wants the economy to bounce bank, and the President's not
wrong to believe that the way to revive things is to boost confidence.

But if mass confidence is what it's gong to take, the people at the
bottom of our economic pyramid need hope -- not only that they'll have
jobs again and homes to keep - but protection against mortgage crooks -
and restitution if they've been scammed.

The city of Baltimore is currently pursuing a suit against Wells Fargo.

Wells Fargo stands accused of disproportionately denying minority
consumers favorable loans while targeting them for subprime ones with
high interest rates, mandatory arbitration clauses and punitive
prepayment penalties.

In court papers, Elizabeth Jacobson, who was one of Wells Fargo's
top loan officers said, "Wells Fargo mortgages had an emerging markets
unit that specifically targeted black churches, because it figured
church leaders had a lot of influence and could convince congregants to
take out subprime loans."

According to another bank officer,
the bank even used software, "to translate marketing materials into
various languages, including something called "African American." Tony
Paschal (that second loan officer,) contends that the subprimes had
sub-names -- "ghetto loans" -- their recipients "mud people."

This isn't small stuff. It's huge. Wells Fargo has faced similar
complaints since the 1990s and Baltimore's just one example. Similar
suits have been filed in Texas, Tennessee, and California. And Wells
Fargo which denies the charges, is not alone. Joining them are most if
not all of the nation's top bailout recipients including Chase
Manhattan and Citigroup.

If the president really wants the economy to bounce back, confidence
needs to be restored. Well here's a question: Wells Fargo -- which
(according to the FCC) gave out nearly $1 million in campaign
contributions and spent $3.6 million lobbying federal officials in the
same period -- stands accused.

We've all become familiar with banks that are 'too big too fail'. Are some also too big to jail?

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