As Christmas preparation begins in earnest and both savers and providers start to turn their attention elsewhere, it is perhaps little surprise to see a fairly quiet week in terms of new best buys.
However, as is often the case, there are exceptions to the general trend and perhaps the biggest news of the week came from NS&I. As you may have already seen in this newsletter, there are new fixed rate options available from this ever-popular provider.
Don’t forget, many of you will finally be seeing the effects of last month’s base rate increase on your existing accounts and you can keep track of any changes using our free Rate Tracker service.
And if you fancy a break from the seasonal preparation, keep up to date with all the latest movements in the market with our Rate Alert emails – if you’re languishing in a low-paying account, make the switch!
Fixed Rate Bonds
First of all the most high-profile news of the week, coming from National Savings & Investments (NS&I) - the launch of new Guaranteed Growth and Income Bonds for one and three year terms.
The pick of the bunch are the three year options, with the Growth Bonds paying 2.20% gross/AER and the Income Bonds paying 2.15% gross/2.17% AER.
The key difference between the two is how and when the interest is paid. With the Growth Bonds, interest is added to the account on an annual basis, whereas Income Bonds pay interest into your bank account on a monthly basis.
The rate on offer is competitive in today’s market and is beaten only by The Access Bank UK (2.25% gross/AER).
However, the one year options are less compelling (1.50% gross/AER and 1.45% gross/1.46% AER respectively) and can be beaten by a number of bonds on the market.
For the full range of options, right up to a five year term, take a look at our Fixed Rate Bond Best Buy Tables or contact us for more information.
Easy Access Accounts
Perhaps it’s not a total surprise to see that last week’s market leader Birmingham Midshires has dropped out of the running, leaving a newly improved offering from Virgin Money at the top of the pile.
The provider’s Double Take E-Saver Issue 2 pays 1.36% gross/AER and can be opened online with a minimum of £1.
The key point with this account is that withdrawals are limited – as the name suggests – to two per year. This may not suit all savers, so the next best option with no withdrawal restriction is from RCI Bank, paying 1.30% gross/AER.
For more information on the current top-paying accounts, please take a look at our Easy Access Best Buy Table.
Fixed Rate Cash ISAs
The main headline this week amongst fixed rate cash ISAs comes from Virgin Money as well, with the new version of its I year fixed rate cash ISA paying 1.41% tax free/AER, topping our table.
Elsewhere the current incumbents are still in place, yet to be shaken from their perches.
Charter Savings Bank (1.72% tax free/AER) still leads the way amongst two year ISAs, Leeds Building Society (1.85% tax free/AER) for three years and United Trust Bank (2.20% tax free/AER) for five years.
For more information on these accounts and for the full list of alternatives, click here for our Fixed Rate Cash ISA Best Buy Tables.
For more information on any of the accounts above or for other options, call our Bath-based Savings Experts on 0800 011 9705. We’d love to hear from you.