Wells Fargo employee asks CEO for raise in mass email that’s gone viral

Posted at 9:39 AM, Oct 10, 2014
and last updated 2014-10-10 11:39:42-04

NEW YORK – A Wells Fargo employee asked CEO John Stumpf for a $10,000 raise in an email, that has gone viral.

The employee, Tyrel Oates, copied thousands of fellow workers in the email, where he asks the Wells Fargo chief to take a stance on income inequality by offering all 300,000 employees a raise.

Oates estimates that an across-the-board pay raise would cost the bank $3 billion, “just a small fraction of what Wells Fargo pulls in annually.”

In the email, a copy of which was obtained by CNNMoney, he pointed out that in the second quarter alone the bank had earned $5.7 billion.

Oates did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

But he told The Charlotte Observer that he’s not worried about his job.

By boosting workers’ pay, Oates said Wells Fargo will “help to make its people, its family, more happy, productive and financially stable.”

Oates urged Stumpf to consider the “positive publicity” the bank would enjoy by boosting workers’ pay “in a time of extreme consumer skepticism towards banks.”

The bank also has an opportunity to set an example for other big corporations by taking a stance on income inequality.

Wells Fargo could “show the rest of the United States, if not the world, that, yes, big corporations can have a heart other than philanthropic endeavors.”

Oates also notes that Stumpf, who routinely ranks as one of the highest paid bank CEOs in America, personally took in over $19 million last year, “more than most of the employees will see in a life time.”

The email came with the subject line “income inequality” was marked “high” importance.

A Wells Fargo spokeswoman said the bank offers its employees “market competitive compensation” that includes base pay, benefits and other “career-development opportunities.”

The bank added that the compensation it offers “significantly exceeds” federal minimums.