In 2015 five giant banks- including Wall Street behemoths JP Morgan Chase and Citicorp- pleaded guilty to criminal felony charges that they rigged the world’s foreign-currency market for their own profit. In 2016 Wells Fargo Bank admitted that thousands of its employees opened millions of fraudulent consumer accounts without authorization, harming people across our country. The actions of these banks pose risks to investors and the public and I question whether these banks can be trusted with County funds. It is absolutely critical that government entities only work with the most trustworthy institutions as we invest and protect the public’s tax dollars.
Santa Cruz County Supervisors modified the County’s investment policy to reflect that the County will not do new business with law-breaking financial institutions and directed the County to unwind existing relationships with the identified banks to the greatest extent feasible.