Wells Fargo disciplines employees over expense report violations

Wells Fargo confirmed Thursday it has disciplined employees in Charlotte and elsewhere for allegedly violating the company’s expense policy for after-hours meals.

The San Francisco-based bank, whose largest employee base is in Charlotte, declined to disclose the number of employees involved. The matter was first reported Thursday by The Wall Street Journal, which said Wells fired or suspended more than a dozen employees in its investment bank over doctoring receipts for dinners charged to the bank.

It’s the latest black eye for Wells Fargo, whose reputation was marred by a 2016 scandal over fake accounts. Since then, the bank has disclosed other practices that have harmed consumers.

“We became aware that certain Wells Fargo Securities team members were not complying with the after-hours meals reimbursement policies after they were brought to the attention of our leaders by concerned team members,” a bank spokeswoman said. “We took action to address the issue and we continue to investigate the matter.”

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The spokeswoman declined to provide further details.

Besides Charlotte, New York and San Francisco were the other markets affected. All three are hubs for Wells Fargo Securities, Wells’ investment bank operation.

According to the Journal, which cited people familiar with the matter, executives became aware that some employees placed dinner orders through delivery services earlier than the bank’s policy allowed, and later allegedly altered time stamps on emailed receipts.

Wells Fargo employs 25,100 in the Charlotte metro area.

Deon Roberts: 704-358-5248, @DeonERoberts