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With a number of well-known brands reducing their saving rates, savers looking for a competitive rate could be better off changing accounts now rather than waiting until after the summer holidays.
In the past week alone Tesco Bank, Post Office® Money and RCI Bank UK have all decreased rates on a range of their savings products, which could be the start of reduced competition within the savings market. As such, savers looking to get a competitive savings rate might be better switching savings account now rather than waiting and hoping for rates to improve.
With the current economic uncertainty many savers are looking to be able to access their savings quickly for which an easy access savings account, which often allows unlimited further additions and withdrawals, is ideal. The current top rate in the easy access savings chart is 1.50% AER, however savers should be aware that these rates are variable so could potentially change, especially if there is a reduction in the base rate. Cynergy Bank offers this top rate on its Online Easy Access Account – Issue 24, which currently includes a 0.75% bonus for 12 months. Marcus by Goldman Sachs® also offers this rate on its Online Savings Account, which includes a 0.15% bonus for 12 months, while Virgin Money offers this rate on its Double Take E-Saver Issue 10 and Man Utd Double Take E-Saver Issue 5. Savers looking to regularly withdraw money from their savings account should note that the Virgin Money accounts only allow two withdrawals per calendar year including closure.
Savers who are willing to lock into a fixed rate bond will be able to benefit from higher rates than those being offered by easy access savings accounts. The downside for savers with this is that they may not be able to withdraw their funds from the account during the term of the account. A one-year fixed rate bond is normally considered a good option for savers who want to benefit from higher fixed rates, but who do not want to lock their money away for a long time.
In order to get the top one-year fixed rate bond rates savers will need to opt for a challenger bank, which although not as familiar as high street banks are still protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Bank of London and The Middle East currently offers the best expected profit rate of 2.10% for a one-year term on its Premier Deposit Account, while savers willing to fix their money into an account for an additional six months can get an expected profit rate of 2.25% on the 18-month version of the account.
Rachel Springall, finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk, said: “It might be a good time for savers to take advantage of the best easy access rates as they could otherwise miss out on some of the most competitive offers around. In the past month alone there have been several rate cuts which may be causing other brands to reconsider their proposition.
“Similarly, some of the top market-leading fixed rate bonds have seen cuts and the market has also seen products disappear sharply too. Clearly, speed is key to take advantage and savers may want to consider both easy access accounts and short-term fixed to brave any economic storm.”
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