Wells Fargo targeting $2B expense reduction by year-end 2018
Sees FY17 effective tax rate about 29%. Expects efficiency initiatives will reduce expenses by $2B annually by year-end 2018 and that those savings will support investments in the business. Plans to close ~450 branches in 2017-2018 to eliminate overlap and improve performance of the network; says 93 branches closed YTD 2017 through June. Anticipates $130M in 2017 savings from gains on building dispositions and workforce optimization with an additional $20M in 2018. Also reducing non-customer facing travel and expenses with focused efforts on virtual conferences and telepresence, as well as leveraging internal meeting spaces and services. Expects an additional $2B in annual expense reductions by the end of 2019; these savings are projected to go to the "bottom line." Says had digital active customers of 27.9M, stable LQ and up 2% YoY; had 20.4M mobile active customers, up 1% LQ. Notes that mobile active customers surpassed our desktop active customers for the first time in May. Expects to increase Q3 dividend to 39c per share from 38c per share, subject to board approval. Comments from slides that will be presented on the Q2 earnings conference call.