Minnesota Banks Proactively Addressing COVID-19 Impacts in Minnesota
March 16, 2020 – The Minnesota Bankers Association (MBA) is working closely with its 295 member banks across the state to proactively address the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
As the COVID-19 situation evolves, Minnesota banks are taking aggressive steps to safeguard the health and safety of their customers, staff and communities while ensuring the delivery of important financial services. With approximately $240 billion in deposits and strong capital levels, Minnesota banks remain financially solid and stand ready to provide important financial services to our fellow Minnesotans. Minnesota banks will look to deliver a larger number of products and services through their enhanced mobile and digital channels.
Federal and state regulation requires financial institutions to have continuity plans and testing processes in place which address pandemic response scenarios. While each individual bank’s plan may differ slightly, a growing number of Minnesota banks are implementing the following changes to minimize person-to-person contact and to encourage responsible social distancing:
- Banks are highly encouraging customers to utilize drive-thru, digital and ATM channels for transactional services. Numerous Minnesota banks will be closing or limiting lobby access to walk-in traffic beginning on Monday, March 16, 2020.
- Banks are asking customers who desire personal or specific banker services to set up office appointments in advance of their visit.
- Banks are enhancing cleaning and sanitary practices to help mitigate the potential spread of the virus.
- Banks are implementing travel restrictions for their staff members.
- Many non-essential, non-customer-facing bank employees are being asked to work from home until further notice.
- Customers facing financial hardships as a result of COVID-19 should contact their bank to discuss their individual situation.
- The United States maintains a world-class payments system. As such, customers are encouraged to take advantage of their debit and credit cards when making purchases.
- Customers are encouraged to check the financial institution’s web site for updates as the situation evolves.
“While there are changes being implemented by MBA member banks, Minnesota banks are open for business,” said Minnesota Bankers Association President/CEO Joe Witt. “Our financial system is strong, and our banks are fully prepared to address the financial needs of their local businesses and families. Like other employers, banks are taking common sense steps to keep their customers and their employees healthy. You may see some changes in how banks deliver their products and services, but know that they are ready to help.” In addition, the MBA is working closely, and routinely communicating with, state and federal bank regulatory agencies and Minnesota elected officials to ensure the efficient and effective delivery of banking services and access to liquidity.