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Wells Fargo CEO to testify bank had no 'orchestrated effort' to give unwanted products

John Stumpf, chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo, testifies during a Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs hearing on September 20, 2016, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., about the unauthorized opening of accounts by Wells Fargo.
Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images

Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf will testify before Congress that while he feels "deeply sorry" that the bank "failed to fulfill [its] responsibility to customers," Wells Fargo undertook no "orchestrated effort" to provide products that consumers didn't want, according to prepared remarks obtained by CNBC.

The head of the San Francisco–based bank is scheduled to speak before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services on Thursday morning, following revelations that Wells Fargo undertook what authorities have called illegal cross-selling of products to consumers without their knowledge. The scandal has brought severe pressure onto Stumpf and punished Wells Fargo shares.

Stumpf also said that Wells Fargo takes allegations of sales practice violations "extremely seriously" and that it "will not rest until the problem is fixed."

On Tuesday, Wells Fargo said the chief executive will forfeit about $41 million in unvested equity and temporarily forgo his salary, as the company's independent directors launch an investigation into the bank's practices.

The bank told CNBC, "While we continue to determine the details for 2017 goals and incentive plans for the retail bank, we are taking steps to accelerate the removal of product sales goals effective October 1, 2016, and put greater emphasis on delivering the best customer experience. We are also making adjustments to ensure that as we make changes, we maintain fair and consistent compensation for retail bank team members and leaders."

Last week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren called for a criminal investigation into Wells Fargo executives, saying in part that reform won't come into the industry until executives are sent to jail.

As Warren accused Stumpf of "gutless leadership," the nation's second-largest bank's stock took a price dip.

The bank earlier this month also agreed to a multimillion dollar settlement with California prosecutors and federal regulators.

Wells Fargo's stock was trading slightly lower midmorning Wednesday. The stock is down more than 16 percent this year.

— CNBC's Jeff Cox and Christine Wang contributed to this report.