Wells Fargo is considering interim CEO Allen Parker as the permanent CEO, CNBC reports, despite announcements from Wells Fargo that the bank will be considering external candidates for CEO. CNBC’s sources state that “Parker’s two years at the bank have given him enough understanding of lingering problems to fix them quickly.”
Parker took over as interim CEO following former CEO Tim Sloan’s announcement in March that he will retire, less than three years into his tenure running the bank. Sloan will step down at the end of June.
According to Bloomberg, directors have asked senior executives for input on their CEO search, and some are lobbying for Parker to stay on as CEO, according to people familiar with the discussions.
“Although I do not know Allen well personally, I do know that he’s very highly regarded both internally and externally, especially in legal and regulatory matters,” former Wells Fargo CEO and Chairman Richard Kovacevich said in an interview with Bloomberg.
Wells Fargo previously stated that they will be considering only external candidates, though some have noted that Parker might count as an “outsider.” Morningstar Inc. analyst Eric Compton called Parker part of the “new wave.”
“The main thing the market wants is someone who’s going to get the regulators off their backs and also take care of the asset cap pretty quickly,” Compton said.
Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett recently weighed in on the search, suggesting that Wells Fargo should consider candidates from not just outside Wells Fargo, but outside of Wall Street.
“They just have to come from someplace (outside Wells) and they shouldn’t come from Wall Street. They probably shouldn’t come from JPMorgan or Goldman Sachs,” Buffett told the Financial Times.
“There are plenty of good people to run it (from the Wall Street banks), but they are automatically going to draw the ire of a significant percentage of the Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives, and that’s just not smart,” Buffett stated.