April 29--Bank of America has improved its standings on a closely watched annual survey of customer satisfaction with the largest U.S. banks, but the Charlotte-based company still ranks near or at the bottom in some markets.
Compared with last year, Bank of America ranked higher in seven of the 11 regions on J.D. Power's 2016 study released this week. This year's report is based on responses of more than 75,000 customers at roughly 130 banks.
The latest report shows Bank of America continues to lag some of its largest rivals, even as satisfaction with the biggest banks on the survey rose for the sixth consecutive year. For another year, Bank of America earned below the average score in every region, while Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase & Co. earned above the average in most regions.
Bank of America climbed in the rankings in California, Florida, the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Southeast, Southwest and north central parts of the U.S. It posted its biggest gain in the Mid-Atlantic -- rising to 10th-from-last place from third-from-last place in 2015.
Bank of America slipped to last place in Texas, down from its third-to-last ranking previously. Its ranking was unchanged in New England and the south central U.S., as well as the Northwest, the other market where it ranked last.
Across all 11 regions, Bank of America posted higher customer-satisfaction scores, on which the rankings are based.
"While we are pleased that our scores improved in all 11 regions surveyed, there is more we are doing to improve our customers' experience with us," Bank of America spokeswoman Betty Riess said.
The survey measures satisfaction in six areas, including fees, problem resolution and product offerings.
According to J.D. Power, overall satisfaction with the biggest banks has significantly improved as they've enhanced digital offerings and been most successful at satisfying millennials, their fastest-growing customer segment.
[Related: BofA adds ATMs as banks push deeper into self-service]
Satisfaction with midsize banks dropped for the first time since 2010, J.D. Power said, noting that regulatory costs have made it difficult for those banks to compete with larger rivals.
Deon Roberts: 704-358-5248, @DeonERoberts
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