Relationships and individuals’ bank switching behavior Abstract We examine the role of relationships between individuals and their banks in determining bank switching behavior. Using data from a survey questionnaire from a random sample of bank customers in the United States, we find that the variables measuring the various dimensions of a relationship significantly lower an individual’s propensity to switch banks. These include the duration of an individual’s relationship with her bank, whether or not she has had problems with her bank in the past, and aspects of the quality of the service relationship.
An innovation of the current paper lies in incorporating finance/economic aspects of relationship with the various dimensions of service quality relationship collectively as determinants of an individual’s propensity to switch banks. The attributes capturing whether or not an individual feels that her bank is responsive, is empathetic and is reliable to her needs, are all significantly negatively correlated with her propensity to switch banks.
Our results demonstrate just how relationships may help in limiting bank switching behavior and deliver a strong message to banks about the importance of relationships in retaining loyal customers. Our findings also underscore the interconnectedness of seemingly disparate disciplines to better understand the behavior and decision making of individuals and their banks. Author Keywords: Bank switching; Relationships