As bank customers switch to the internet and smart phones to do bank business, brick and mortar banks lose transactions. In the case of the Bank of America in Mammoth Lakes, officials say this trend has led to plans to close the branch May 2nd.
Letters that explain the closure will go out soon and word had already circulated in town as management leaked the news to customers. Colleen Haggerty of Bank of America Media Relations said that after careful consideration, bank officials decided to close the long-time branch. She said such decisions are “driven primarily by a decline in transactions as customers increasingly rely on other channels such as mobile and online banking.” The decision will mean a loss of local jobs, a loss of services and for some a depressing feeling about economic instabilities in a low snow year.
Haggerty focused on the use of technology and said, “Bank of America customers everywhere are using their mobile phones to log into their accounts 120 million times per month, deposit 100,000 checks via Mobile Check Deposit every day and transfer $2 billion per week between their accounts and others’, and to pay their bills.” B of A’s mobile app, she said, is downloaded more than 50,000 times per week. Haggerty explained that the lease at the Mammoth Bank of America will expire in May and offered a chance to “assess the longevity of the banking center and a timeline for closure.”
As an alternative to an in-town bank, customers, Haggerty suggested, can still access all deposits and account services online, by mobile phone, or at other banking center locations, including Bishop.” She said the closure will not impact automatic deposits or bill pay withdraws. Bank of America will maintain an ATM in town, Haggerty said, for Mammoth residents. Haggerty also confirmed that the two bank robberies at the Bank of America last year did not influence the decision to close the branch.