Wells Fargo Bank in Superior closing its doors

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Customers received letters on May 7 that the Superior Wells Fargo Bank will close this summer. The company is planning on closing around 800 branches by 2020. (Kathleen Woodford/Mineral Independent)

The Wells Fargo Bank in Superior will be closing its doors this summer, according to a letter customers received on May 7. Customers were told they could transfer their accounts to Missoula Wells Fargo Banks, but for many Superior customers the 60 mile drive to Missoula is an inconvenience and many said they will transfer their accounts to the town’s remaining bank, TrailWest.

“This is not an easy decision or one that we take lightly. We continually evaluate our branch network and make adjustments based on customer use, market factors, economic trends, and competitor actions,” said Staci Schiller, regional communicator for Wells Fargo in Montana.

The Superior branch has seen a decrease in customers over the past few years. “While branches continue to be important in serving our customers’ needs, we’re finding that customers are often using our wide range of digital capabilities for many of their banking needs. As a result, more transactions are happening outside the branch,” she said. The doors will close on Aug. 15, 2018.

Faced with legal expenses and other financial difficulties, the company announced in January plans to close around 800 branches nationwide by 2020. They closed 200 branches last year but still had with more than 5,800 branches, the most out of all the major banks in the United States according to a CNN report.

Wells Fargo has faced legal troubles with the bank’s litigation expenses tripling to $3.3 billion late year. The legal costs stem from the bank’s fake-account accusations, investigations into pre-crisis mortgages and other consumer-related matters. Reports indicate that as many as 3.5 million potentially fake bank and credit card accounts were created as part of their “notoriously aggressive sales goals”.

The bank has also pledged to help employees affected by bank closures to “identify opportunities within Wells Fargo, as well as within the community,” the CNN article stated. There are three team members at the Superior branch and they can apply for other positions within the company. Wells Fargo will also offer job search resources and other support as they transition to the next phase of their careers, said Schiller.

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