As Thousands of U.S. Bank Branches Permanently Close Year-to-Year, Analysts Warn of a Digital-Only Banking World

Joel Eisenberg

Digital banking is fast becoming the globe’s preferred method of financial transaction.
Bank of AmericaPhoto byAdobe Stock

Author’s Note

This article is based on corporate postings and accredited media reports. Linked information within this article is attributed to the following outlets:,,, and


According to’s “Regulatory Failure 101: What the Collapse of Silicon Valley Bank Reveals,” this month’s collapses of the titular bank, as well as Standard Bank, has proven near-calamitous for the U.S. banking industry.

As excerpted from The collapses of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank this past weekend were the end point in an all-too-familiar cycle: first the boom, then the breathtakingly speedy bust and then the bailout. We are now at the postmortem moment — when everyone wonders where the regulators were. Silicon Valley Bank has already become notorious for how obvious its red flags were.

Regarding those red fags, the article went on to state: Perhaps the most telling was the rapid growth of its borrowing from the Federal Home Loan Banks system. Banking experts know this Depression-era group of government-sponsored lenders as the second-to-last resort for banks.

On a vaguely-related note, my March 19th NewsBreak piece, “At Least Two Wells Fargo Bank Branches Permanently Closing, Following Multiple Closings Last Year,” discussed upcoming branch closures of one of the nation’s largest banks.

From my NewsBreak piece: For now, industry analysts are debating online — as a targeted Google search will verify — if these upcoming bank closures will piggyback into further closures of Wells Fargo branches in other states, but the arguments to now are purely speculative.

Indeed, other banks and brick and mortar bank branches are presently at greater risk than ever before, in the case of the latter due in large part to the growing popularity of digital banking.

Let us explore further.

U.S. Banks, 2023

A January 13th report from CNBC, entitled “If Your Local Bank Branch Has Closed For Good, You’re Not Alone — Here’s What You Can Do,” states brick and mortar bank customers have options to process their transactions.

As excerpted from the report: Whether you live in a major city or a rural community, it’s hard to argue the convenience of an online-only bank. According to J.D. Power’s 2022 U.S. Direct Banking Satisfaction Study, one-quarter, or about 27%, of Americans currently use an online-only bank. The study also suggests that online banks are best when it comes to customer satisfaction, with Charles Schwab and Discover Bank tied at first place and Ally Bank following in third for checking accounts.

Per a January 21st, 2022 report from, “U.S. Banks Close Record Number of Retail Branches in 2021, Wells Fargo Shutters Most,” the state of U.S. banks may determine potential record-breaking closures moving forward.

From the January 21st report: U.S. banks closed a record number of retail branches in 2021 as customers increasingly turn to digital banking and the industry consolidates. On net, U.S. banks shuttered 2,927 branches last year, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data. Banks closed nearly 4,000 branches and opened more than 1,000 branches, the analysis found.

2020 had set the previous bar for brick and mortar branch closures, due to the height of the pandemic and subsequent accelerated digital banking. In 2023, industry analysts — as a targeted Google search will verify — are largely expecting a permanent shift to all-digital banking, not only in the U.S. but internationally, in the coming decades.’s November 21, 2022 piece, “Wells Fargo and Bank of America Are Closing Over a Dozen Branches,” stated: With the rise of online banking, you can do more and more with your money through an app or website. Still, there are times when you need to visit a brick-and-mortar location to grab cash from an ATM or to secure a cashier's check. You probably know where your bank's local branch is, and it's comforting to know you can stop by in a pinch. But if you're a Wells Fargo or Bank of America customer, your closest bank might soon be on the chopping block.

Innumerable branches for these and other banks are continuing closures in 2023.


The shift to online banking is a developing story. In the event of pertinent updates to this matter, inclusive of progress and official announcements of milestone dates, I will share them here on NewsBreak.

Thank you for reading.

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I am an award-winning author, screenwriter for film and television, and producer. My mission on News Break is to share socially important perspectives on both culture and pop-culture. Member of PEN America, and the WGA.

Northridge, CA

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