First Midwest closing branches

Chicago’s First Midwest Bank is consolidating 17 branches early next year, or about 15 percent of its network.

Nearly all locations are within close proximity of another First Midwest branch, and approximately half have been closed over the past six months due to the pandemic, the bank said. It will still have 105 offices in the Chicago area after the closures.

“Our clients are increasingly favoring a more digital banking experience, which has been amplified and accelerated due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mark Sander, president and chief operating officer of the $21 billion First Midwest.

First Midwest is the latest in a string of regional Midwest banks slimming down their networks, with Chicago’s Byline Bank, Wisconsin’s Associated Bank and Illinois-based Midland State have all announced coming branch closures in recent weeks. Pennsylvania’s Northwest Bank also announced it would close branches in Indiana and Ohio.