bank icon

Banking News

Top Banking News

news icon
Average one year bond rates at a three-year low
Derin Clark

Derin Clark

Online Reporter
Published: 18/05/2020

Savers looking to lock their money into a short-term bond will be disappointed to learn that the average rate on a one year fixed rate bond has fallen below 1% for the first time in three years.

Data from the soon to be published Moneyfacts UK Savings Trends Treasury Report shows that the average rate on a one year fixed bond stands at 0.99%, its lowest since May 2017 when it was 0.98%. As well as this, the average one year fixed ISA rate has also fallen and now stands at 0.91%, the lowest it has been since June 2017 when it was also 0.91%.

This will have a significant impact on savers who locked their money into a short-term bond during 2018 or 2019, as they will find the savings rates currently on offer to be much lower. Rachel Springall, finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk, explained: “Those savers who are about to come to the end of their fixed bond may wish to prepare themselves for a shock, as they will find the top rates have dropped substantially over the years. Indeed, a year ago the top one year fixed bond paid 2.20% as an expected profit rate from Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME), but today the top deal pays 1.50% from Gatehouse Bank as an expected profit rate, 0.70% less. On an investment of £20,000, that is a total interest loss of £140. In May 2015 the top five year fixed bond paid 3.09% from United Bank UK (now UBL UK), so a saver coming off this deal and is now looking to lock their money away for five years with the top deal from Gatehouse Bank, that pays 1.85% as an expected profit rate, will note a difference of 1.24%, a total loss of £1,240 on a £20,000 investment over five years.”

Falling average rates have also impacted easy access accounts, with the average easy access rate dropping to 0.40% at the start of May, from 0.51% in April. This was the biggest fall since December 2012, three months after the Funding for Lending Scheme was launched. In April, a new Funding for Lending Scheme was introduced, which together with the historic low base rate cut that took place in March, could see easy access savings rates fall further over the next few months.

Springall added: “If savers are looking for some flexibility with their cash then they may turn to an easy access account, however as these pay a variable rate the return could drop at any point. In fact, the market is already seeing a domino effect of rate cuts, with some of the top deals worsening in recent weeks. Providers are perhaps cutting rates to deter deposits due to demand or find they are much higher up the rate tables than they can cope with. Indeed, according to the Bank of England £11 billion flowed into sight deposits (such as easy access accounts) during March.”

Savings market analysis - average rates 

  March 2020 April 2020 May 2020
Average one year fixed rate bond 1.15% 1.09% 0.99%
Average longer-term fixed rate bond* 1.37% 1.28% 1.18%
Average one year fixed rate ISA 1.14% 1.04% 0.91%
Average longer-term fixed rate ISA* 1.29% 1.15% 1.07%
Average easy access rate 0.56% 0.51% 0.40%
Average easy access ISA rate 0.83% 0.79% 0.63%
Average notice rate 1.00% 0.97% 0.89%
Average notice ISA rate 1.13% 1.05% 0.89%

*Longer-term bonds or ISAs are those with terms over 550 days. Average interest rates based on a £5,000 deposit as at the start of the month. Source: Moneyfacts Treasury Reports 

Read More
news icon
New students have one week left to apply for next year’s student finance

Despite the impact the Coronavirus pandemic is having on education, the Student Loans Company (SLC) has recommended that students start preparing their finances for the new academic year as soon as possible.

In fact, new students have just a week left to submit their applications for next year’s student finance, with the applications needing to be submitted before 22 May 2020. The SLC has stated that new students do not need a confirmed place on a course to apply and they can use their first choice of course on their application instead. They are able to update their application later if this changes.

Returning students have until 19 June to reapply for their next year’s student finance.

The easiest way to apply for student finance is online at gov.uk/studentfinance. The SLC has also set up a dedicated resource for parents and partners who are supporting applications, which can be accessed here https://studentfinance.campaign.gov.uk/.

Commenting on the need for students to act quickly with their finance applications, Derek Ross, executive director of operations at SLC, said: “We recognise that students will have much to consider at the moment. However, for those going to University this autumn, it is important that they make applying for student finance a priority. SLC has worked hard to ensure the continuity of the application service throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and the message is still that students should get their applications in ASAP to ensure that their student finance is in place for the new academic year.”

Read More
news icon
Virgin Money increase current account rate to 2.00%

Today Virgin Money has increased the rate on its current account, which now offers one of the most competitive interest rates on a current account with an overdraft facility.

The Virgin Money Current Account now pays 2.00% gross on balances of up to £1,000 , an increase from its previous rate of 0.50% gross. In addition to this, the Virgin Money Current Account offers an overdraft facility that charges 19.9% EAR on both arranged and unarranged overdrafts.

Today’s news is good news for savers looking for a competitive rate on a flexible account in which to deposit a portion of their funds, especially as we reported earlier in the week that a number of providers are set to cut rates this month. In addition to this, the Virgin Money Current Account now beats the rate on the highest-paying easy access account, which currently stands at just 1.20%, making it an attractive option for savers with small funds. However, savers looking to deposit funds of more than £1,000 should consider other options as those customers depositing the maximum of £1,000 into the Virgin Money account will see a return of just £20 a year.

Rachel Springall, finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk, said: “It’s exciting to see Virgin Money boost the credit interest rate on up to £1,000 held in its current account by a substantial 1.50%. This month there are many alternative brands cutting their credit interest rates, so it’s encouraging to see Virgin Money buck the trend. This current account could be a great choice for consumers looking to make their savings cash work harder for them, but they must also compare the rest of the accounts details as well.”

Read More
news icon
Nationwide set to cut its 5% current account interest rate

Consumers looking to take advantage of the 5% interest rate being offered by Nationwide on its FlexDirect account have just days left to open the account as the rate is due to be cut on 1 May 2020.

Those with a FlexDirect account can currently earn 5% AER for the first 12 months on balances up to £2,500, making this account an attractive option for those with large deposits. From 1 May, however, new customers will only get a rate of 2% AER for 12 months on balances up to £1,500.

Our research has also found that a number of banks are set to follow Nationwide in cutting rates on current accounts next month. TSB is set to cut its rate of 3% AER on balances of up to £1,500 on its Classic Plus Account to 1.50% AER on 2 May. Santander will cut the rate on its 123 Current Account from 1.50% AER to 1.00% AER on balances up to £20,000 on 5 May, while Starling Bank is due to cut the rate on its Current Account from 0.5% AER on balances up to £2,000 and 0.25% AER on balances up to £85,000 to 0.05% AER on balances up to £85,000 on 18 May.

Today's top high interest current accounts

Provider and account Credit interest now Changes in May
Nationwide FlexDirect 5% AER credit interest on balances up to £2,500 (first year) 1 May = 2% AER credit interest on balances up to £1,500 (first year)
TSB Classic Plus Account 3% AER credit interest on balances up to £1,500 2 May = 1.50% AER credit interest on balances up to £1,500
Santander 123 Current Account 1.50% AER credit interest on balances up to £20,000 5 May = 1.00% AER credit interest on balances up to £20,000
Bank of Scotland Classic - with Vantage 1.00% AER credit interest on balances up to £3,999.99, and 2.00% AER £4,000 up to and including £5,000 No changes scheduled for May
Lloyds Bank Club Lloyds 1.00% AER credit interest on balances up to £3,999.99, and 2.00% AER £4,000 up to and including £5,000 No changes scheduled for May
Starling Bank Current Account 0.5% AER credit interest on balances up to £2,000 and 0.25% AER on balances up to £85,000 18 May = 0.05% AER credit interest on balances up to £85,000
Virgin Money Current Account 0.50% AER credit interest on balances up to £2,000 No changes scheduled for May

Please note: Some accounts may have certain eligibility criteria or charge a fee. Source: Moneyfacts.co.uk

Commenting on the cut in rates on current accounts, Rachel Springall, finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk, said: “Time is running out for consumers to secure the top high interest rate available on a current account, with just days in fact. Not only is the top rate of 5% credit interest disappearing form the current account market, but other providers, such as Santander, Starling Bank and TSB, are cutting their own credit interest rates next month too. It seems that in a low interest rate environment, the impact of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic is having an effect on the current account market now too.

“If consumers want to earn 5% AER (4.89% gross) for the next 12 months on a current account, then they will have to apply before 1 May to Nationwide to open its FlexDirect Account, where it will pay this rate on balances up to £2,500. After this date, the credit interest rate will drop to 2% AER (1.98% gross) and it is applied to balances up to £1,500. This is calculated as a yearly interest loss of £95 based on the AER rate drop and lower balance to earn interest on (5% on £2,500 versus £2% on £1,500). It’s disappointing to see such a lucrative offer being cut, but Nationwide had offered 5% AER on its FlexDirect account for new customers for the past seven years, albeit applied for only the initial 12-month period of account opening.”

Read More
news icon
Metro Bank customers to receive £10.5 million refund

Metro Bank customers are set to receive a £10.5m refund after the bank failed to provide unarranged overdraft warnings.

An investigation by the Competition and Market Authority (CMA) found that Metro Bank failed to inform nearly 130,000 of its customers that they would be charged for entering an unarranged overdraft, which banks are legally required to do in order to give customers time to act to avoid unarranged overdraft fees.

In addition to having to refund £10.5 in fees, Metro Bank has offered to pay back 8% interest on the charges and will consider reasonable claims for extra costs incurred by affected customers.

Read More

Recent News

news icon
Banks to offer interest-free overdrafts

9th April 2020

Banks will be able to offer interest-free overdrafts for three months on borrowing of up to £500

Banks will be able to offer interest-free overdrafts for three months on borrowing of up to £500

Read More
news icon
How is your bank helping customers impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic?

6th April 2020

Here we take a look at what each of the main banks is doing to help their customers impacted by the Covid-19 outbreak

Here we take a look at what each of the main banks is doing to help their customers impacted by the Covid-19 outbreak

Read More
news icon
New overdraft fees introduced

1st April 2020

Consumers who regularly go into their overdraft will likely notice that the rates they are being charged will change this month, as banks introduce their new overdraft fees

Consumers who regularly go into their overdraft will likely notice that the rates they are being charged will change this month, as banks introduce their new overdraft fees

Read More
news icon
Virgin Money customers can now use their debit card abroad for free

6th March 2020

From today, Virgin Money current account holders will be able to make transactions using their debit card while abroad without incurring any foreign currency fees

From today, Virgin Money current account holders will be able to make transactions using their debit card while abroad without incurring any foreign currency fees

Read More

Search News

(showing 1 to 4 of 92) (showing 1 to 3 of 92) (showing 1 to 4 of 92)

Most Popular Banking News

news icon
How is your bank helping customers impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic?

6th April 2020

Here we take a look at what each of the main banks is doing to help their customers impacted by the Covid-19 outbreak

Here we take a look at what each of the main banks is doing to help their customers impacted by the Covid-19 outbreak

Read More
news icon
Top current accounts that pay you to switch

8th January 2020

If you are thinking of moving to a new current account, why not get paid for it too? We look at the top offers.

If you are thinking of moving to a new current account, why not get paid for it too? We look at the top offers.

Read More
news icon
Virgin Money increase current account rate to 2.00%

1st May 2020

Today Virgin Money has increased the rate on its current account, which now offers one of the most competitive interest rates on a current account with an overdraft facility

Today Virgin Money has increased the rate on its current account, which now offers one of the most competitive interest rates on a current account with an overdraft facility

Read More
news icon
New students have one week left to apply for next year’s student finance

14th May 2020

Despite the impact the Coronavirus pandemic is having on education, the Student Loans Company (SLC) has recommended that students start preparing their finances for the new academic year as soon as possible

Despite the impact the Coronavirus pandemic is having on education, the Student Loans Company (SLC) has recommended that students start preparing their finances for the new academic year as soon as possible

Read More

More Money and Finance News

Get our weekly newsletter

Weekend Moneyfacts is available free by email to all Moneyfacts.co.uk users.

Please send me Weekend Moneyfacts, Savers Friend and selected third-party offers.

Cookies

Moneyfacts.co.uk will, like most other websites, place cookies onto your device. This includes tracking cookies.

I accept. Read our Cookie Policy