Banks changing branch operations due to coronavirus

This story has been updated. 

Central Indiana banks say they remain open for business, though many are temporarily closing or limiting access to their branch offices during the coronavirus outbreak.

Over the last few days a wave of institutions has announced operational changes that range from special hours for older customers to temporary closures of some branch offices.

Effective Thursday, JPMorgan Chase & Co. closed about 20% of its 4,000 or so branch offices, with the remaining offices operating on a reduced schedule from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“We made sure that any branch that had a drive-up window or glass partition teller window were among those that remained open for business, to give us the maximum flexibility to continue to provide critical services to our clients if events warrant,” Chase spokeswoman Carlene Lule told IBJ via email.

Bankers at the affected locations are being shifted to branches that remain open, Lule said, and branch employees will continue to receive pay for their regularly scheduled shifts even if their work hours are reduced.

In central Indiana, Chase has 65 branch locations and another six freestanding ATM locations. Of those, seven have temporarily closed: One in Indianapolis at 8120 S. Meridian St., two each in Fishers and Westfield; and one each in Brownsburg and Carmel.

Evansville-based Old National Bank is among the many institutions that are shifting their branch service to appointment-only.

Starting Friday, Old National, which has 18 Indianapolis-area offices, is moving to appointment-only service for customers who need to visit a branch, including customers making withdrawals of $2,000 or more.

Appointments will be available between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., with the hour from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. reserved for customers age 60 or older or for those in high-risk populations. Employees will clean and disinfect surfaces after each appointment, the bank said.

The bank’s drive-thru windows will continue to operate with normal hours of operation.

Other local banks that have announced coronavirus-related changes:

—Cincinnati-based Fifth Third Bank announced Thursday afternoon that it is shifting its branch lobbies to appointment-only service starting Saturday.

—Pittsburgh-based PNC Bank announced Thursday that it is temporarily closing about a quarter of its branches and shifting the others to a drive-through-and-appointment-only model. A list of the temporary closings was not available Thursday.

—Muncie-based First Merchants Bank announced Thursday that, effective immediately, it would serve customers via drive-thru at its branches.

—Merrillville-based Centier Bank announced Wednesday that it has temporarily closed all of its branch lobbies and in-store locations except by appointment. Drive-thru service continues. Centier has 64 retail locations, including six in the Indianapolis area.

—Carmel-based Merchants Bank of Indiana announced Wednesday evening that it was immediately operating its branches on a drive-thru-only basis, with in-person meetings available by appointment only. Locations that do not have a drive-thru window will remain open “with precautionary measures in place,” the bank said. Merchants has six banking centers, all in Indiana: two in Carmel, and one each in Indianapolis, Lynn, Richmond and Spartanburg.

— Financial Center First Credit Union closed its branch lobbies starting Wednesday and moved to drive-through-only operations. Customers needing in-person assistance for things like safe-deposit box access or loan closings should make an appointment, the credit union said. Based in Indianapolis, Financial Center First has seven Indianapolis-area locations and one in Kokomo.

— Chicago-based BMO Harris Bank has suspended lobby access at 421 of its branches, while extending its drive-up hours at those locations. Customers who need to access a safe-deposit box can do so by appointment, the bank said Wednesday. The bank also said that it has temporarily closed 63 of its locations and is keeping 69 other branches open. BMO has 22 Indianapolis-area locations. Of those, its 135 N. Pennsylvania St. and 4200 S. East St. have closed; and its 1402 N. Shadeland Ave. and 925 N. High School Road locations remain open for full service. All other local branches have shifted to drive-in-only operations, according to BMO’s website.

—Cleveland-based KeyBank announced Thursday afternoon that it is immediately moving all of its branches to appointment-only and drive-through service only. The bank has 19 Indianapolis-area locations.

— On Wednesday, Cincinnati-based First Financial Bank moved to appointment-only status at all its banking centers. It has also temporarily closed a handful of its 145 locations, including its Carmel office. The bank, which has 11 Indianapolis-area locations, said it is also working on customer-relief measures including increasing cash withdrawal limits at its ATM machines.

— The Farmers Bank announced Thursday that it is moving to appointment-only access at all of its branch locations beginning at noon. Customers who need to access safe-deposit boxes, close a loan or open an account can schedule an appointment. Drive-up operations will continue and some locations will offer extended hours, the bank said. Based in Frankfort, The Farmers Bank has 10 offices total, including one location each in Fishers, Noblesville and Lebanon.

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2 thoughts on “Banks changing branch operations due to coronavirus

    1. Thank you, Kenny N. Regions was not mentioned in the article and I was wondering.

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