Banking

Bank Of America Goes Employee-Free At Some Branch Locations

For those who would prefer that their dealings with the outside world involve as little human interaction as possible, Bank of America has just opened some branch locations that should be particularly appealing.

There are now three completely automated branches out there serving customers. These new locations give customers the option to use an ATM or video chat with employees at other branches, according to BoA spokeswoman Anne Pace. The move comes as BoA is one of many U.S. banks working to reduce its physical footprint — and make more optimized use of what physical locations remains behind.

Those better-optimized new branches are typically smaller, more technologically advanced and are structured around different products: mortgages, credit cards and auto loans, specifically.

So far, accoridng to Pace, fully automated BoA has come to Minneapolis and Denver — both of which are relatively new markets for the bank. According to Dean Athanasia, BoA could be looking to open 50-60 new branches in the next year — though with so many additional closures that 50 to 60 new locations might not represent a net increase.

Bank of America opened 31 new branches in 2016, and as of today operates 4,579 financial centers. That is a drop-off from the 4,726 BoAs operated during the fourth quarter of 2015 and the 5,900 open for business at the end of 2010.

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