'Zombie' homes haunt Florida neighborhoods

By Alison Fitzgerald and Jared Bennett

Neighborhoods devastated by thousands of abandoned homes as banks fail to follow through on foreclosures.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… the banks and ask them to “step up and take responsibility.” He said Wells Fargo is the lender with the most abandoned homes in his city, with about 600 pr …"

"… ny made $5.7 billion in profit in the second quarter of this year.   Wells Fargo spokesman Tom Goyda said the company is the largest mortgage servicer in t …"

"… imore and Memphis, Tennessee, succeeded in obtaining settlements from Wells Fargo for alleged predatory lending that led to abandoned homes, but Birmingham, …"

Homeowners steamrolled as Florida courts clear foreclosure backlog

By Alison Fitzgerald

Why are Florida's courts rushing to clear more than 700 foreclosure cases per day?

Excerpts from this story referencing "chief financial officer":

"… oposal was withdrawn after enormous opposition, including from Florida’s chief financial officer, Jeff Atwater, who said in a comment letter to FHFA the plan wou …"

Lobbying activity declines among top special interests

By Dave Levinthal

Three-fifths of nation's top 100 lobbying entities spent less on influence in the second quarter compared to a year ago.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas":

"… per PAC — Cochran, and Reps. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and Pete Sessions, R-Texas, are favored politicos — and counts that money toward its lobbying outpu …"

Fourth case reopened after Center uncovers judicial conflict of interest

By Chris Young

U.S. appeals court reopened foreclosure case after Center uncovered that a judge owned stock in Wells Fargo, court reaches same decision.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… A federal appeals court has scrapped a 2010 foreclosure ruling in favor of Wells Fargo Bank after a Center for Public Integrity investigation revealed that one o …"

"… rcuit Court of Appeals once again dismissed the couple’s claims accusing Wells Fargo of predatory lending. “I do not agree with it,” Mountaga Bah said of …"

"… owledged in March that Judge Barbara Keenan owned $1,900 worth of stock in Wells Fargo at the time she participated in the 2010 ruling favoring the bank. In a M …"

"… l pending. Many of the others remain in limbo. Jim Hines, a spokesman for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, declined to discuss the Bah foreclosure case in detail. “ …"

Lobbyists boost Senate Democrats

By Michael Beckel

Democrats have outraised their GOP counterparts in terms of money coming from lobbyists doubling as fundraisers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate Majority Leader":

"… cans who associate with them. Records indicate that Senate Democrats from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., likewise collected bundle …"

Federal judges plead guilty

By Reity O'Brien, Kytja Weir and Chris Young

Judges acknowledge conflicts of interest Center found in 26 cases.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tom Fitton":

"… wide. “I’m not sympathetic to their forgetting to check,” said Tom Fitton, president of the conservative-leaning Judicial Watch, an organization tha …"

Meet the Banking Caucus, Wall Street's secret weapon in Washington

By Daniel Wagner and Alison Fitzgerald

Industry campaign cash flows to pro-bank activists in Congress, yielding big returns.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Commodity Futures Trading Commission":

"… oups,” said Bart Chilton, who until last month was a commissioner at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which regulates derivatives. When Congress and trade groups work togethe …"

"… letters to the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission and The Securities and Exchange Commission post their letters online. The …"

N.M. bill aims to put judge disclosures back online

By Kytja Weir

Bill calls for posting judge's financial disclosures online in wake of Center for Public Integrity investigation on transparency.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… interest after the Center found a judge who owned as much as $1 million of Wells Fargo stock when she participated in a case favoring the financial giant. Wyomin …"

Shining a light on ALEC's power to shape policy

By Wendell Potter

Conservative group's power has been under-covered.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Ted Cruz":

"… reporters felt the summit was worth their time, despite the fact that Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., were on the agen …"

State supreme court judges reveal scant financial information

By Reity O'Brien, Kytja Weir and Chris Young

Despite universally poor disclosure rules, Center finds numerous conflicts among state high court judges.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wisconsin":

"… after a judge has been admonished, the problems do not end. In 2007, Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Annette Ziegler was officially warned by a stat …"

Lobbying dips overall, but the beat goes on for guns, drugs and agriculture

By Dave Levinthal

But third-quarter expenditures are down for many special interests.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lockheed Martin":

"… rican Hospital Association, Google, aerospace company Boeing, defense firm Lockheed Martin and telecom giant Verizon Communications. FedEx Corp., Koch Industries, J …"

Subprime lending execs back in business five years after crash

By Daniel Wagner

Executives from all of the top 25 subprime lending firms are working in the mortgage business five years later.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America":

"… ing to a civil complaint filed last year by the Justice Department against Bank of America, which purchased Countrywide in 2008. Kurland and other Countrywide alumn …"

"… an, she says, from roughly $400 per month to more than $800. By that time, Bank of America had bought Countrywide. Fore asked Bank of America to change the loan term …"

"… han $800. By that time, Bank of America had bought Countrywide. Fore asked Bank of America to change the loan terms until her husband’s workers’ compensation set …"

"… reclosure sale reversed so that she and George can remain in the house. A Bank of America spokeswoman said the bank does not comment on open litigation. The company …"

Ex-Wall Street chieftains living large in post-meltdown world

By Alison Fitzgerald

CEOs of banks that fueled the subprime crisis that led to the economic meltdown largely avoid consequences.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington Mutual":

"… the sales of Merrill Lynch to Bank of America, Wachovia to Wells Fargo and Washington Mutual to JPMorgan, thousands of hours and millions of pages have been filled try …"

Bear Stearns mortgage executives have plum jobs on Wall Street

By Lauren Kyger and Alison Fitzgerald

Executives from the mortgage finance division that helped sink Bear Stearns have similar jobs at major Wall Street banks.

Excerpts from this story referencing "The Wall Street Journal":

"… no resigned as ResCap’s CEO but remained on its board. He told The Wall Street Journal that he was considering starting a hedge fund, a real-estate investme …"

Yellen as Fed chair would be tougher on banks

By Alison Fitzgerald

Janet Yellen, President Obama’s intended nominee for Federal reserve chief, may prove to be tougher on banks.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Chicago":

"… er of bank failures during the crisis of all the Fed district banks, after Chicago and Atlanta. And Wells Fargo, the biggest bank under the supervision of t …"

Super PAC leader undeterred by criminal conviction

By Adam Wollner

Pennsylvanian convicted of crime, banned from Virginia Tech campus wants to make political waves.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mitt Romney":

"… political campaign before, but volunteered for GOP presidential candidates Mitt Romney and John McCain during the last two elections. Fauber is not the only twe …"

Mel Watt enjoys close ties to financial industries

By Alison Fitzgerald

Bank leaders, PACs made prospective housing agency leader a top recipient of campaign cash.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America":

"… the last election cycle, the political action committees of Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and Wells Fargo each gave Watt’s campaign $10,000. Bank of America …"

"… Bank of America and Wells Fargo each gave Watt’s campaign $10,000. Bank of America and Goldman each gave an additional $5,000 to Watt’s leadership PAC. Wa …"

"… es Committee and he represents the Charlotte, N.C., area, which is home to Bank of America and was home to Wachovia, until it failed and was purchased by Wells Fargo …"

"… former CEO Franklin Raines chipping in $1,500 to help Watt keep his seat. Bank of America, Watt’s hometown bank that got a government bailout after buying money-l …"

After big U.S. Supreme Court win, Montana nonprofit suffers string of losses

By Paul Abowd

Democrat Steve Bullock's gubernatorial win a low point for litigious conservative group.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… was made out to a company called “Direct Mail,” and deposited into the Wells Fargo bank account of ATP.In November, Kennedy told the Associated Press that he …"

Corporate cash helps fuel Democratic convention despite pledges

By Michael Beckel

Democrats kick off their convention in Charlotte Tuesday with plenty of corporate support despite grass roots pledge.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Time Warner Cable":

"… at the Charlotte convention: AT&T Inc., Bank of America, Duke Energy, Time Warner Cable, Coca-Cola, Wells Fargo, UnitedHealth Group, Piedmont Natural Gas, US Airw …"

Bailed-out banks, Freddie Mac, AIG gave $6 million to 2008 conventions

By John Dunbar and Michael Beckel

Corporate donors to 2008 party conventions included financial institutions bailed out by government.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… ions as “our sponsors.”This year, companies ranging from Coca-Cola and Wells Fargo to Xerox and UPS are working to ensure that they have a presence at both c …"

"… both conventions.“There’s a lot of cost around the convention,” said Wells Fargo spokesman Kathy Harrison. “It is important as a good corporate citizen t …"

"… “It is important as a good corporate citizen to support the host city.”Wells Fargo was one of the banks that benefited from the government’s bank bailout, …"

"… s came from U.S. Bancorp ($1 million), Goldman Sachs & Co. ($255,000), Wells Fargo ($250,000), J.P. Morgan Chase ($100,000) and Morgan Stanley ($100,000) and …"

Wells Fargo to pay $175M in lending settlement

By The Associated Press

Justice Dept: Wells Fargo to pay $175M to settle allegations of bias against blacks, Hispanics

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. …"

"… air-lending laws, the Justice Department announced Thursday. Wells Fargo, the nation's largest residential home mortgage originator, allegedly enga …"

"… gin rather than because of differences in credit-worthiness. Wells Fargo also will pay $50 million in direct down payment assistance to borrowers i …"

"… l surtax for African Americans in Miami in 2007 was $3,657." Wells Fargo noted in a statement that it has denied the claims. "Wells F …"

Wells Fargo hit with $3.1 million fine in mortgage servicing mess

By John Dunbar

A federal judge has ordered Wells Fargo to pay a homeowner $3.1 million for mishandling a loan.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… information about the status of their loans.  …"

"… al bankruptcy judge in the Eastern District of Louisiana. Manger described Wells Fargo's behavior as "highly reprehensible" in its five-year fight with the homeo …"

"… atch News. In an emailed statement published in the Huffiington Post, Wells Fargo spokesman Tom Goyda said "we believe that there are numerous factual and l …"

New whistleblower cases allege continued bank fraud

By Amy Biegelsen and Emma Schwartz

Mortgage modifications and appraisal processes in question

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Housing Administration":

"… B Home.Those inflated prices, the complaint alleges, included thousands of Federal Housing Administration backed loans, which were supposed to be reviewed by qualified appraisers. …"

Raging against the foreclosure machine

By Ben Hallman

Automated foreclosure process creates errors, stifles modifications and enrages helpless homeowners

Excerpts from this story referencing "Baltimore":

"… d call I’d get a different person,” said William Allen, a retiree near Baltimore who is fighting a Bank of America foreclosure.  “I worked on it nea …"

"… ly couple, are fighting to keep their home in a picturesque mill town near Baltimore where they raised six children. Their troubles began in 2007 when a third- …"

Whistleblowers ignored, punished by lenders, dozens of former employees say

By Michael Hudson

Former mortgage company employees say fraud was widespread in industry

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… rmer ran into trouble soon after she started her job as a fraud analyst at Wells Fargo Bank. Her bosses, she later claimed, were upset that she was, well, findin …"

"… e didn’t “see the big picture” and that “it is not your job to fix Wells Fargo.” Management, she claimed, ordered her to stop contacting the company’ …"

"… er to stop contacting the company’s ethics hotline.In the end, she said, Wells Fargo forced her out of her job.Parmer isn’t alone in claiming she was punishe …"

"… ea that employees were punished for reporting problems.In court documents, Wells Fargo denied Parmer’s charges that management interfered with in-house fraud w …"

Bailed-out banks paid no income tax in some years, according to study

By John Dunbar and John Dunbar

New study shows bailed-out banks among those companies that paid no income tax at least one year

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… according to an iWatch News analysis of a new study of tax dodgers. Wells Fargo & Co., Goldman Sachs Group, PNC Financial Services Group, Capital One …"

"… purchases from the Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program. Wells Fargo received the greatest benefit among all 280 companies studied. If the bank …"

"… rly $18 billion, the study said. The banking giant paid no taxes in 2009. Wells Fargo was also among the most profitable corporations on the list, having collec …"

"… list, having collected $21.8 billion in profits over the three-year span. Wells Fargo received a $25 billion government investment in October, 2008 from the TAR …"

Investor protections imperiled by Wall Street, GOP assault on financial reform

By John F. Wasik

Wall Street and GOP assault consumer protections in Dodd-Frank reforms

Excerpts from this story referencing "ExxonMobil":

"… al Corp. Assn. PAC.  Of the 20 top contributors to Bachus, only two—ExxonMobil and Honeywell—had no direct connection to financial services. All told, …"

As housing crisis festers, mortgage servicers spend $8 million on political contributions

By Michael Hudson and Aaron Mehta

Mortgage servicers pony up $8 million in political donations as housing crisis festers

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… with the firms — Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Citigroup, Wells Fargo & Co. and Ally Financial Inc. — over allegations of widespread abuse …"

"… es.Four of the five companies under scrutiny—Bank of America, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo and Citigroup — are major donors for state and federal political campaig …"

"… re vital to financial corporations when the Democrats controlled the House.Wells Fargo gave over $1 million to candidates, party committees and other PACs since …"

"… on to candidates, party committees and other PACs since the start of 2009. Wells Fargo has given at least $45,000 each to the NRCC and NRSC and at least $30,000 …"

“Go tell a Republican,” Rep. Frank says to complaints that Congress has failed to curb foreclosures

By Julie Vorman

Foreclosure complaints? "Go tell a Republican" says Rep. Frank

Excerpts from this story referencing "Comptroller of the Currency":

"… lf-assessment of foreclosure practices by Sept. 30. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) says big banks that are loan servicers must suspend foreclosure proc …"

Inside the shell: Drugs, arms and tax scams

By Gerard Ryle

The man behind shell companies linked to arms deals, drug lords and tax fraud.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wells Fargo":

"… S history.Wachovia Bank – now a subsidiary of the global financial giant Wells Fargo – was fined $160 million for helping to disguise the illegal origins of …"

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