Bank Branches Lose Their Allure in Developed Asia, McKinsey Says

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(Bloomberg) -- A significant majority of people living in richer Asian countries would be willing to consider turning away from brick-and-mortar bank branches and shifting toward a digital-only proposition, according to a report by McKinsey & Co.

A total of 23 percent in developed Asia countries said "yes" and 54 percent said "maybe" when asked if they would shift to a branchless bank, according to the report published on Tuesday.

"Physical branches have been the traditional customer engagement channel, but there is a clear shift in Asia towards digital channels for daily transactions," according to the report.

However, the report also noted that a significant minority still prefer access to a bank branch, especially in the emerging economies of the region. Around 24 percent in developed Asia said they wouldn’t shift to a branchless bank, while 46 percent said the same in emerging Asia. "A significant percentage of customers in Asia still use the physical branch for transactions they consider complex," according to the report.

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