Banks adapt to coronavirus threat with drive-through options, appointments

In California, trips to the bank are discouraged but not prohibited

Banks around the country are adapting to the coronavirus pandemic by asking patrons to make appointments, going drive-through only and even closing down locations as they continue to operate.

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Pittsburgh-based PNC Bank, which mainly has locations on the East Coast, closed about one quarter of its locations on Friday. PNC Bank wants as many of its locations to operate in drive-up only mode as possible.

PNC CEO Bill Demchak assured customers the bank has the "capital and liquidity to continue to meet the needs of our entire customer base" in a statement.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
PNCPNC FINL SVC111.88-1.76-1.55%
JPMJP MORGAN CHASE & CO.98.56-1.14-1.14%

California and Illinois are currently under shelter-in-place orders calling for residents to stay indoors barring a specific, justifiable reason during extenuating circumstances. Shelter-in-place orders vary from place to place, and in California trips to the bank are not barred but are discouraged.

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On Thursday, Chase temporarily closed about 20% of branches.

A woman hands a check to a bank teller.

Of those branches open, most have drive-up or teller partition glass to further safeguard employees and customers.

The remaining 4,000 branches will operate with reduced hours that went into effect on Tuesday.

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The company has also stepped up branch cleaning practices to help reduce the spread of germs and viruses.

Banks like Capital One and Wells Fargo, while keeping many locations open, have used the virus to encourage customers to use their mobile banking tech.

Locally-owned banks are having to adapt as well. In hard-hit California, American Riviera Bank of Santa Barbara is asking customers to use ATMs, night drops and drive-up windows only, KEYT reported.

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"We're trying to protect our employees, clients while still servicing the community," American Riviera Bank vice president Joanne Funari told KEYT.