Wells Fargo Reads TPMCafe

June 1, 2008 10:33 a.m.

Last night I wanted to talk about the difference between banning certain transactions and merely “nudging” people away from them, so I posted a story I from a bankruptcy lawyer that told an unflattering story about Wells Fargo.

A reader posted a response that she evidently received sometime between 10:15 Saturday night and 5:30 Sunday morning from “Ms. xxx xxxxx” at Wells Fargo Loss Mitigation Department. The letter includes a lot of information about the debtor, whom Wells Fargo evidently could immediately identify. The letter also explains that the people at Wells Fargo “follow Prof. Warren’s publications and speeches most carefully.”


I’ll ask the lawyer about the disbursements mentioned in the Wells Fargo letter. It wasn’t in his email, but surely he would know if that had happened. Depending on the timing, the disbursements might be recoverable by the trustee for the benefit of all the creditors.

But now that we have a representative of the Wells Fargo Loss Mitigation department explaining business practices on TPM, I have a couple of questions: First, how many more “sad little stories” (as you refer to it) are there like this? How many loans have you made this year to people with credit scores of 525 and maxed out credit cards? How many do you keep, and how many do you take sell for a fee to someone else, and then take another fee to service? How do you decide which ones to keep and which to sell?

Second: Why didn’t you post to TPM yourself? Is there a reason that only “Ellen” has any direct contact with you? Was it Ellen’s decision to delete your name, or was that part of your instruction to her? I use my name, and I hope you will use yours too when you are speaking on behalf of the company.

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It is exciting to know that Wells Fargo wants to use TPM to explain its practices. I’m sure other readers have questions too.

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