By Orla McCaffrey 

Customers at some banks across the country were temporarily unable to access their accounts online or through mobile apps on Wednesday, shortly after the first round of government stimulus checks started landing in bank accounts.

Customers reported trouble accessing account information at JPMorgan Chase & Co., Citigroup Inc., U.S. Bancorp, PNC Financial Services Group and Truist Financial Corp., among others.

The banks acknowledged that some customers had problems logging in throughout the afternoon and said they were working to resolve the issues. PNC, Citigroup and JPMorgan said in the late afternoon that they had fixed the problem. Truist said most of its online and mobile services had been restored.

A PNC spokeswoman said an "unprecedented volume" of customers logging on to check for stimulus payments prompted the network issues.

The payments are part of the economic-relief package passed by Congress last month to try to keep the economy afloat during the coronavirus crisis. It relies heavily on banks as the conduit.

The Treasury Department began transferring payments to banks on Friday. Banks had until Wednesday to start transferring the money to customers.

The glitches weren't limited to large financial institutions.

Fiserv Inc., which provides the underlying technology for many banks, particularly smaller ones, said "exceptionally high systemwide volume" led to intermittent accessibility Wednesday. Fiserv said midafternoon that its services had returned to normal.

An alert on the website of Summit Credit Union in Madison, Wis., warned that "online and mobile banking systems are experiencing slowness" because of a wave of customers hoping to find their stimulus deposits.

Wells Fargo said it didn't experience connectivity issues Wednesday. But its daily volume of direct deposits hit a record high and was roughly three times the average, according to Ed Kadletz, the bank's head of deposit products.

Wells Fargo had been preparing to handle the flow by, for example, ironing out how to handle direct deposits that arrive in accounts that have been closed. It also temporarily halted collection on negative balances to avoid eating up customers' stimulus funds.

Ben Eisen contributed to this article.

Write to Orla McCaffrey at orla.mccaffrey@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 15, 2020 18:45 ET (22:45 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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