Bank of America’s latest expansion moves Charlotte institution into another new state

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Bank of America has opened its first retail bank branches in Kentucky, the company announced Monday, as the bank continues to expand its retail footprint in a number of U.S. cities.

The bank has opened three branches in Lexington, with a fourth planned for next year. Bank of America has added 20 ATMs throughout the city over the past two years and previously operated in the state through Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, the bank stated in a news release.

The bank currently has branches in 37 of 50 states. In the last 18 months, Bank of America has opened 90 new branches across the U.S., according to the bank.

Lexington is the last on a list of nine new markets where the bank has focused its retail expansion efforts over the last several years, Aron Levine, president of preferred and consumer banking and investments, said in an interview.

Those markets were “places where we had a Merrill Lynch Wealth Management presence or a commercial presence and not retail,” he said, and included cities like Denver, Minneapolis and Salt Lake City.

The total number of the bank’s branches in the U.S. has fallen over the past decade, Levine said, from about 6,100 in 2009 to 4,300 now. As a growing number of customers rely on digital banking services to complete day-to-day transactions, the bank’s new branches will focus on offering guidance for customers making financial decisions, he said.

The new branches, Levine said, will be a place “for people to come in, have a full relationship with us and help them think about their financial well being.”