On one hand, fudging expense reports hardly seems like the worst financial wrong-doing taking place on Wall Street. On the other, aren’t investment bankers pretty rich to begin with? At any rate, the repentant Wells Fargo has fired or suspended at least a dozen employees and is investigating dozens of others “over alleged violations of the company’s expense policy regarding after-hours meals,” according to The Wall Street Journal.
Like many employers, Wells Fargo compensates employees for dinner if they’re still working at the office after a certain time (in this case, 6:30 p.m.). But Wells Fargo Securities (WF’s investment-bank division) executives recently noticed some employees regularly placed Seamless or Caviar delivery orders earlier than the policy allowed, then “allegedly altered the time stamps on emailed receipts to make their meals eligible for reimbursement.” The discovery kicked off a widespread internal investigation, “affecting Wells Fargo employees ranging from analysts to managing directors in New York, San Francisco and Charlotte, N.C.”
The investigation comes at an already sensitive time for Wells Fargo. Just a few months ago, the bank released an ad called “Earning Back Your Trust” in response to a sales-practices scandal in 2016 in which it was revealed that Wells Fargo employees had opened as many as two million fraudulent deposit and credit-card accounts, resulting in a $185 million fine for the bank. Maybe that’s why the rebuilding company is cracking down so hard on these bankers trying to sneakily eat on the company dime? The investigation in ongoing.