Labor Department will probe Wells Fargo; CEO forfeiting $41 million in stock

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Secretary of Labor Tom Perez on Tuesday said he would initiate a "top-to-bottom" review of labor practices at disgraced bank Wells Fargo — coming as CEO John Stumpf agreed to forfeit $41 million over a brewing sales scandal.

Perez was responding to a letter from eight Democratic senators who had requested a probe into whether Wells Fargo — one of the nation's largest banks — had violated wage and working hour laws by failing to pay overtime to tellers and sales representatives who stayed late to meet sales quotas.

RELATED: John Stumpf compensation over time

"We take the concerns raised in your letter very seriously," Perez told the lawmakers, whose action was spearheaded by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.

"Given the serious nature of the allegations, I have directed enforcement agencies within the department to conduct a top-to-bottom review of cases, complaints or violations concerning Wells Fargo over the last several years," Perez also wrote.

See more of Elizabeth Warren's interragation of John Stumpf:

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Elizabeth Warren questions Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf
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Elizabeth Warren questions Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf
Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf arrives to testify before a Senate Banking Committee hearing on the firm's sales practices on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 20, 2016. REUTERS/Gary Cameron
U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) questions Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf (not pictured) during his testimony before a Senate Banking Committee hearing on the firm's sales practices on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 20, 2016. REUTERS/Gary Cameron
US Senator Elizabeth Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts, questions John Stumpf, chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo, as he testifies about the unauthorized opening of accounts by Wells Fargo during a Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, September 20, 2016. / AFP / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Senator Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, left, speaks with Senator Joe Donnelly, a Democrat from Indiana, before John Stumpf, chief executive officer of Wells Fargo & Co., not pictured, testifies in front of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2016. Stumpf, struggling to quell public rancor after the bank's employees opened unauthorized accounts for legions of customers, said the company has expanded its review of the matter to include 2009 and 2010. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Bloomberg via Getty Images
US Senator Elizabeth Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts, questions John Stumpf, chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo, as he testifies about the unauthorized opening of accounts by Wells Fargo during a Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, September 20, 2016. / AFP / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
US Senator Elizabeth Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts, holds up copies of Wells Fargo earnings call transcripts as she questions John Stumpf, chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo, as he testifies about the unauthorized opening of accounts by Wells Fargo during a Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, September 20, 2016. / AFP / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 20: Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., talk before a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs hearing in Dirksen on unauthorized accounts opened under customers 'names at Wells Fargo featuring testimony by CEO John Stumpf, September 20, 2016. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 20: From left, Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., attend a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs hearing in Dirksen Building on unauthorized accounts opened under customers' names at Wells Fargo featuring testimony by CEO John Stumpf, September 20, 2016. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
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In their letter to the department on Friday, the senators detailed how Wells Fargo had "a management culture characterized by 'mental abuse,' being forced to work overtime 'for what felt like after-school detention' during the week and on weekends, and being 'severely chastised and embarrassed in front of 60-plus managers.'"

Wells Fargo said the bank aimed to make all employees "feel valued, rewarded and recognized" through "market competitive compensation, career-development opportunities, a broad array of benefits, and a strong offering of work-life programs."

RELATED: Wells Fargo & Company (WFC) vs. S&P 500 Percent Change Over Time - 1 Year

The probe of the embattled bank is underway as Stumpf has agreed to give up about $41 million in stock awards and his salary following a $185 million settlement with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, reported CNBC.

Wells Fargo employees were accused of opening fee-generating accounts without customers' authorization in order to meet the high sales goals. But the bank said it fired about 5,300 employees from January 2011 to March 2016 for engaging in the deceptive practice.

Also on Tuesday, Wells Fargo said it cut ties with its community banking division head, Carrie Tolstedt. She will not be given a severance package, according to CNBC.

RELATED: Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf

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Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf
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Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf
John Stumpf, President and CEO of Wells Fargo, participates in a panel at the 2015 Fortune Global Forum in San Francisco, California November 2, 2015. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage
Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf speaks during a news conference for Wachovia employees at the Wachovia corporate headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, October 15, 2008. REUTERS/Chris Keane (UNITED STATES)
TARP recipient financial institution leaders testify before House Financial Services Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, February 11, 2009. From left are, Goldman Sachs' Lloyd Blankfein, JPMorgan Chase's Jamie Dimon, Bank of New York's Robert Kelly, Bank of America's Ken Lewis,State Street's Ronald Logue, Morgan Stanley's John Mack, Citi's Vikram Pandit, and Wells Fargo's John Stumpf. REUTERS/Larry Downing (UNITED STATES)
Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf testifies before a Senate Banking Committee hearing on the firm's sales practices on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 20, 2016. REUTERS/Gary Cameron TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 20: John Stumpf, chairman and CEO of the Wells Fargo & Company, prepares for testimony before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee September 20, 2016 in Washington, DC. The committee heard testimony on the topic of 'An Examination of Wells Fargo's Unauthorized Accounts and the Regulatory Response.' (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
John Stumpf, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Wells Fargo & Co., speaks at the Bloomberg Year Ahead: 2014 conference in Chicago, Illinois, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2013. Stumpf said he dislikes Federal Reserve monthly bond purchases at this point in the economic cycle and that the policy has hurt savers. Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 30: Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf (L) speaks with Wall Street Journal Editor in Chief Gerry Baker on FOX Business Networks' 'Opening Bell With Maria Bartiromo' at FOX Studios on April 30, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images)
John Stumpf, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Wells Fargo & Co., speaks during an interview in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, May 7, 2015. Wells Fargo, the fourth-biggest U.S. bank by assets and the nation's leading home lender, in March left Stumpf's pay unchanged at $19.3 million after the firm generated a bigger profit than any other U.S. bank for a second straight year. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
John Stumpf, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Wells Fargo & Co., listens to a question during an interview in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, May 7, 2015. Wells Fargo, the fourth-biggest U.S. bank by assets and the nation's leading home lender, in March left Stumpf's pay unchanged at $19.3 million after the firm generated a bigger profit than any other U.S. bank for a second straight year. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
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