Personal Finance

America’s Favorite Banks

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Americans’ satisfaction with their banking services has improved significantly during the past few years, but banks are struggling to meet the needs of young people, minorities and the affluent. Midsize banks are having a particularly difficult time pleasing these consumer groups, according to the J.D. Power 2014 U.S. Retail Banking Satisfaction Study.

The disconnect stems from poor online, mobile and problem-resolution offerings. Affluent customers make up the least-satisfied consumer group, because banks aren’t always meeting their high expectations of customer service. Those shortcomings aside, bank users reported experiencing fewer problems than they did last year, and when issues arise, they’re more satisfied with the resolution process than they have been previously.

The Top Banks Across America

Banks received consumer satisfaction scores on a 1,000-point scale, as well as a Power Circle Rating between 2 and 5: 5 means the bank is among the best in its category, 4s are better than most, 3s are average and any company below those standards receives a 2. Because bank options vary by location, J.D. Power compiled ranking lists of 11 regions. Here are the banks that received the best ranking (5) in each region.

California

1. Rabobank
Customer satisfaction score: 832
Power Circle Rating: 5

Florida

1. Chase
Customer satisfaction score: 826
Power Circle Rating: 5

2. TD Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 823
Power Circle Rating: 5

Mid-Atlantic

1. Northwest Savings Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 832
Power Circle Rating: 5

2. Susquehanna Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 829
Power Circle Rating: 5

3. National Penn Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 825
Power Circle Rating: 5

4. Hudson City Savings Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 823
Power Circle Rating: 5

Midwest

1. First Midwest Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 813
Power Circle Rating: 5

New England

1. Eastern Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 817
Power Circle Rating: 5

2. Rockland Trust Co.
Customer satisfaction score: 810
Power Circle Rating: 5

North Central

1. Huntington National Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 828
Power Circle Rating: 5

Northwest

1. Umpqua Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 845
Power Circle Rating: 5

South Central

1. Arvest Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 843
Power Circle Rating: 5

Southeast

1. United Community Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 854
Power Circle Rating: 5

Southwest

1. Arvest
Customer satisfaction score: 831
Power Circle Rating: 5

Texas

1. Frost Bank
Customer satisfaction score: 856
Power Circle Rating: 5

Reasons to Love Your Bank

Poor customer service tends to drive people to change where they do business: Among people who switched banks in the past 12 months, 28% said they did so because of inadequate customer service. Location was another issue: 21% said they changed banks because their old one wasn’t conveniently located. Nineteen percent switched because interest rates weren’t competitive, and 15% said they switched to avoid high fees.

Customer satisfaction plays a huge role in consumer finance, because if you don’t like working with your bank, you may be less likely to routinely check your transactions and have trouble addressing account problems. You’re better equipped to handle issues like fraud or a data breach if you’re familiar with your bank’s account management processes, so you should thoroughly research your options when choosing your bank.

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Image: Keith Brofsky

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