American Express shares dip on report investigators probe sales practices


American Express shares fell after the Wall Street Journal reported that investigative departments at three U.S. financial agencies were probing the card issuer’s selling practices.

The company’s shares fell 1.3% on Thursday after falling 5% earlier.

The offices of the Inspectors General of the Federal Reserve, the Department of the Treasury, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. are investigating whether New York-based AmEx pushed its cards on small businesses with deceptive tactics and whether customers were harmed, according to the Journal.

Citing current and former employees of the issuer, the Journal reported in March that in an effort to boost sales, some AmEx employees distorted rewards and card fees or issued cards that customers did not have. not wanted.

AmEx said in a statement Thursday that it has “strong compliance policies and controls in place, and [does] does not tolerate professional misconduct. The company added that it was cooperating with regulators’ review of small business business card practices that occurred in 2015 and 2016.

“We have performed a detailed and independent review of these sales from this period, and have found no evidence of a pattern of deceptive sales practices,” AmEx said. “The business acquisition group responsible for these sales represented approximately 0.25% of the 65 million new cards acquired by American Express worldwide between 2014 and 2019. We take these matters seriously and will continue to cooperate with our regulators.

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