JPMorgan Chase reports slowed annual growth in mobile banking users in Q2 2020, despite coronavirus lockdown measures.
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The hit to profit was largely due to credit costs totaling $10.5 billion: The bank had $1.6 billion in net charge-offs and added $8.9 billion to its credit reserves as it continues to brace for losses stemming from the coronavirus crisis. Its average deposits spiked 20% year-over-year (YoY) to $832 billion, a considerable increase from the 8% YoY growth in deposits recorded last quarter.
Although the pandemic has limited access to branches, Chase didn't see accelerating active mobile customer growth. The bank's total rose 10% YoY in the quarter to hit 39 million users. This is a slight deceleration from the 11% YoY growth in active mobile customers in Q1 2020 — which is surprising, because the full effects of coronavirus lockdowns were only felt in the last few weeks of Q1, meaning Q2 could have brought a surge in new digital channel users as branches closed down and customers sheltered in place.
While Chase doesn't disclose total digital active customers more broadly, the slight deceleration in mobile customer growth amid this crisis suggests that Chase may be approaching a saturation point, at which all of its customers who can be convinced to try mobile banking are already using it.
Chase could boost mobile banking growth by ensuring users have positive app interactions amid the crisis — and leveraging that to attract new customers who leave their other banks due to a poor digital experience. The bank could generate positive word of mouth by making its mobile app a versatile channel that customers can use to satisfy their banking needs while branches remain closed for safety.
This good PR could draw in customers who have been dissatisfied with their bank's digital banking options during lockdown: 7% of US consumers intend to switch banks for one that has better mobile capabilities post-coronavirus, per a survey from JD Power. And Chase has room to improve customer satisfaction with its mobile banking offerings: It came in ninth place out of 20 banks in terms of offering desirable features in Business Insider Intelligence's 2019 US Mobile Banking Competitive Edge study (Enterprise only).
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