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A nationally representative survey of 1,155 consumers found a lack of consumer interest in banking with Bank of America, Chase, Citibank and Wells Fargo. One-half of consumers have a banking relationship with one of these banks. Raddon Financial Group, a strategic business unit of Open Solutions Inc., found that while 63% of current customers indicated they are either “extremely likely” or “very likely” to remain customers, the remaining 37% are less likely to continue banking with them. Twelve percent said they were “not very likely” or “not at all likely” to remain customers. When noncustomers were asked how likely they were to become a customer of one of these banks, none indicated they were “extremely likely” to do so, and less than 1% said they were “very likely” to become a customer. Eighty-eight percent said they were “not very likely” or “not at all likely” to become a customer. “Consumers are clearly reacting to the financial crisis, which appears to be seriously limiting [these banks'] ability to acquire new customers,” said Bob O’Meara, vice president, director of research for RFG. When asked about the impact the banking industry crisis has had on their future choice of financial institution, 63% of respondents said they would consider a “local bank,” and 43% cited a credit union as their preference. “In order for community banks and credit unions to attract customers from [big banks], they’ll need to be strong in technology, convenience and service,” O’Meara advised.

Peter Westerman

Credit Union Times

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