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Huntington Bank to close 70 branches, 30 in Ohio, 12 in Cleveland area

October 3, 2018

Huntington Bank to close 70 branches, 30 in Ohio, 12 in Cleveland area

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Huntington Bank plans to close 70 branches, including 12 in Greater Cleveland. The closures are expected around the first of the year.

Of the affected branches, 30 are in Ohio. But Huntington is still expected to have the largest number of branches in Ohio.

The Columbus-based bank has seen significant growth in recent years, both because of its 2016 purchase of FirstMerit Bank in Akron, and because it has brought an attractive message to consumers tired of fees and gotcha games that some banks play.

But now it’s pulling back on the growth, at least in terms of branch numbers. The closures will represent about 7 percent of Huntington’s branches. These follow Huntington’s closure of more than 100 branches in 2016 and 2017 following its purchase of FirstMerit.

The bank hasn’t yet indicated the locations that will close. And Huntington hasn’t yet determined how many employees will lose their jobs.

“It’s our goal to place the vast majority of our branch colleagues in other roles where they can continue their career with Huntington,” spokeswoman Emily Smith said.

Huntington said it now wants to broaden online and mobile banking.

“Savings from the branch consolidation will be substantially reinvested in these increasingly-used channels,” Smith said.

The news follows a trend of larger banks consolidating branches. With more and more business being conducted online, bank traffic is down and the banks don’t feel the need to have a branches every mile or two in densely populated communities. Among the bigger local banks that have closed branches in recent years: Key, PNC, Fifth Third and Citizens.

Huntington’s latest consolidation decision followed an analysis by the bank, Smith said. All of the locations are near other branches, she said.

“Huntington regularly reviews its distribution network to ensure our mix of branches, ATMs, and online and mobile banking meets our customers’ evolving needs,” she said. “In making these adjustments, branches were reviewed for customer traffic patterns, transaction trends and proximity to nearby Huntington branch locations. Many of these branches have an existing Huntington branch in close proximity that can support customers of the consolidating offices.”

Now, the bank will focus on helping customers transition to new branches, as well as offering more options with mobile and digital banking.

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