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Wells Fargo fined in Ireland over reporting breaches, bank says customers not affected

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Christian Fernsby ▼ | July 5, 2019
The Central Bank of Ireland reprimanded and fined Wells Fargo Bank International Unlimited Company (WFBI) €5,880,000 for serious failings in its regulatory reporting capability and compliance.
Wells Fargo
Ireland   Wells Fargo
The Firm has admitted five breaches. The breaches varied in duration from 1 January 2014 to 28 February 2019. The breaches include failure to accurately report the firm’s capital position and to comply with a requirement in relation to liquidity testing.

The Central Bank determined that the appropriate fine was €8,400,000, which was reduced by 30% in accordance with the settlement discount scheme provided for in the Central Bank’s Administrative Sanctions Procedure.

The Central Bank’s investigation into the firm commenced following a thematic inspection of regulatory reporting in five peer credit institutions in 2016. The inspection focused on end-to-end processes, internal controls and governance of regulatory reporting.

The Central Bank found serious and systemic failings in the Firm’s regulatory reporting capability, relating to the following:

Failure to calculate and report accurately the firm’s capital position

Failure to periodically monetise a sample of liquid assets, as required by legislation

Weak governance arrangements including lack of robust board and senior management oversight

Inadequate internal control mechanisms including a failure to properly document processes and procedures

Inadequate review by internal audit of regulatory reporting processes and procedures

Weaknesses in IT systems and a significant number of manual adjustments used to prepare regulatory returns

The governance arrangements and internal controls relating to regulatory reporting requirements in place at the time were inadequate to such an extent that the Firm did not detect its own non-compliance with those requirements.

"WFBI takes its regulatory obligations seriously and we are committed to complying fully with regulatory requirements," Wells Fargo spokesperson said.

"These events concerned regulatory reporting and did not affect our customers.

"We have made significant improvements to our systems, processes and resources for regulatory reporting to the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) since these events.

"We have also integrated continuous review and improvement into how we operate to ensure that our regulatory reporting to the CBI continues to be complete, timely and accurate," the spokesperson concluded.