Bank of America Corporation
Wells Fargo & Company
) have recently launched new retail services that are accessible
through smartphones. These initiatives are part of these two banks'
ongoing cost-containment measures. This reflects the latest trend
in the banking industry to capitalize on the growing popularity of
mobile banking services.
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BofA has come up with a service that will permit customers to make
deposits by presenting photo of a check through their smart phones.
Moreover, the company has introduced a service that will enable
customers to transfer funds via email addresses or mobile phone
numbers. In addition, BofA has initiated a coupon program that
allows customers to receive discounts from retailers by clicking on
offers sent to their online banking accounts.
Wells Fargo has also launched its mobile check deposit service
earlier this year. Now, the company is planning to make the service
available throughout the U.S. by the end of this year. Along with
this service, Wells Fargo has also launched its money transfer
platform - clearXchange - a collaborative venture by BofA, Wells
JPMorgan Chase & Co
clearXchange is intended to provide a competitive deterrent to
certain vendor-led companies that have been eating away banks'
revenue. With clearXchange, consumers can directly transfer money
without the need of vital information like the bank account
numbers. The transfer can take place using cellular phone numbers
or email addresses.
The increasing use of mobile banking services will help banks like
BofA and Wells Fargo to trim their expenditure and improve
efficiency. Moreover, with a dismal economic backdrop, it becomes
necessary for banks to resort to cost-cutting measures in order to
survive the tough times ahead.
BofA has been planning to shutdown approximately 750 branches over
the next couple of years and it recently has closed around 9% of
its ATMs. The enhanced mobile banking services will help BofA
achieve its efficiency improvement target.
For Wells Fargo, clearXchange will surely boost its payments
businesses by upsetting its rival's efforts to encroach the bank's
Currently, shares of BofA retain a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates
into a short-term Hold rating. The shares of Wells Fargo also
retain a Zacks #3 Rank.