Global bank HSBC has today announced that it will close 82 branches in the UK between April and September this year.
The reason behind the decision is that customers are turning to digital banking alternatives – a trend accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, there are not expected to be any job losses at this point, and that staff members would be moved to other nearby branches.
Following the closures, HSBC will have 511 branches remaining across the UK.
All the closures are within one mile of a Post Office, where customers can do their day-to-day transactions that would have been carried out at an HSBC.
Jackie Uhi, HSBC UK’s Head of Network, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has emphasised the need for the changes that we are making. It hasn’t pushed us in a different direction but reinforces the things that we were focusing on before and has crystallised our thinking. This is a strategic direction that we need to take to have a branch network fit for the future.”
It has been a difficult year for HSBC, who reported a 35% fall in pre-tax profits and announced a 35,000 global job cuts programme to reclaim $13bn lost in bad loans.