Wells Fargo’s Problems Won’t Be Eradicated by Their New CEO

It’s going to take some time for issues to get better at Wells Fargo That was the message traders took away from the financial institution’s first earnings launch under new CEO Charlie Scharf yesterday and a downgrade from Piper Sandler this morning.

Wells Fargo inventory (ticker: WFC) dropped 5% after it reported on Tuesday and is buying and selling down one other 2.2% on Wednesday. Wells’ shares are down 1% over the last year, an interval through which the S&P 500 index has gained 26%.

“It’s nonetheless early days. I don’t have the solutions, but,” Sharf mentioned. The financial institution remains to be beneath a Federal Reserve-mandated balance-sheet cap, and whereas earlier administration regimes tried to be sanguine in regards to the financial institution’s prospects in Washington, Scharf was upfront about how long a path lies forward. “I’m unsure that any of those public points might be closed this year,” he stated.

The size of that path is why Piper Sandler’s R. Scott Siefers downgraded the inventory from Overweight to Neutral, saying in a notice to shoppers Wednesday morning that the financial institution’s “earnings miss and, extra importantly, a scarcity of visibility on enhancement” merit caution.

Wells Fargo has been below the gun since a fake-accounts scandal broke in 2016. Now, it isn’t simply that it must get out from underneath its Fed-imposed cap and restore its relationships with its different regulators. The financial institution, as Barron’s has pointed out, additionally wants to cut expenses, hold its clients, and, sooner or later—as soon as it’s allowed to—develop once more.

None of that shall be simple; in fact, however, with more easy communication from executives, at the least, buyers won’t be capable of saying they’re stunned when it takes some time to tug off.


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