🔔 Rates Rundown - it might be Spring but there's little new life in the best buy tables,

Author: Anna Bowes
03rd May 2024

Things have continued to quieten down in the last couple of weeks and there’s really not too much to report as we wait to see what happens to inflation next.

It feels like the market is holding its breath, waiting to see what the Bank of England will announce at the next Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting on 9th May.  But what are the best rates just now?

RATES ARE CORRECT AS AT THE TIME OF PUBLICATION (03/05/2024). All up to date rates
can be found on our Best Buy tables.

Easy Access

There’s not been too much
action in the easy access table over the last couple of weeks – and what has happened has been mixed.

It started with some disappointing news, as Virgin Money withdrew its Defined Access eSaver Issue 23 paying 5.01% and Close Brothers, which had been taking up the 5th spot, also withdrew its Easy Access Account (Issue 3) which was paying 5%. This meant that the bottom two accounts in our table were paying less than 5%; 4.96% with Kent Reliance and 4.94% with Oxbury. This was the first time this year that we’d had any accounts paying less than 5% in our easy access table.

However, Paragon Bank launched a new Rainy Day Saver 2024 Easy Access account paying 5% via the Raisin UK cash platform. And then earlier this week Oxbury launched a new Easy Access Account Limited Edition 1 paying 5.02%. The key thing to be aware of with this account is that the minimum balance is £20,000 – if the balance falls below this, there will be no interest due.

Unfortunately, while we were welcoming two new accounts to the 5% club, Cynergy withdrew issue 72 of its Online Easy Access account, and the new issue 73 is paying a little less at 4.95%. And then Principality Building Society withdrew its Online Bonus Double Access paying 5% too.  But Close Brothers had a trick up its sleeve and reissued Issue 3 of its Easy Access Account paying 5% AER, so at least there’s only one account in our top five paying less than 5% at the moment!

Fixed Rate Bonds

Up to 1 Year

Things have quietened down dramatically in the 1-year table, and if it wasn’t for SmartSave and Habib Bank Zurich UK, I’d have little positive news to report. And even the moves from these two providers were underwhelming, moving ahead of Allica Bank for 12 months by 0.01%, from 5.17% to 5.18% - making them the joint top paying 1-year bond.

There are also still a couple of six-month bonds that are available paying a little more than this. As we end the week, Atom Bank and Allica are sharing the top spot paying 5.25% AER.

Still, it’s better that things have tweaked upwards rather than down.

2 Years

Unfortunately, there is no positive news to report in the 2-year table over the last couple of weeks. The only activity has been withdrawals and reductions.

A couple of weeks ago, SmartSave had fought to get to the top of the table, but within a week, that market-leading bond which was paying 5.08% AER had been withdrawn and replaced by a new issue paying just 4.96% which saw it fall from the top of the table to the bottom – just hanging onto 5th place.

However, a reduction from Beehive Money and withdrawals by Hampshire Trust Bank and Close Brothers has pushed that SmartSave new bond up to 2nd place.

All in all, this negative activity means that whilst two weeks ago the top five were paying between 5.05% and 5.08%, there is now only one bond in this table paying more than 5%; RCI is paying 5.05% AER on its 2 Year Fixed Term Savings Account*.

Let’s see what happens next.

3 Years

Things have been a little brighter in our 3-year table, with the top rate on offer actually increasing, initially by just 0.01% - and yes, that move was from SmartSave, but then Birmingham Bank put the cat amongst the pigeons by launching a bond paying 4.73% AER.  

Other increases from Shawbrook and Zenith who are now offering 4.71% and 4.70% respectively, means that the average of our top five has gone from 4.69% two weeks ago, to 4.71% today.

It’s better than nothing!

5 Years

SmartSave was on the hunt for the top spot again in the 5-year table, tweaking its rate from 4.57% to 4.58% to sit in pole position. This was in order to take 1st place from Shawbrook who had increased its rate from 4.53% to 4.57%. Unfortunately, Shawbrook has not yet retaliated, but it’s good to see that even the longer-term top rates are holding fast – even though we are heading ever closer to a base rate cut.

Fixed Rate Cash ISAs


Whilst there has not been a great deal of activity over the last couple of weeks, a few increases have pulled the average of the top five up from 4.77% to 4.78%.

OakNorth was the first to move, increasing from 4.70% to 4.71% but Shawbrook was the next to go, increasing to 4.72%, good news although both of these were paying less than the Virgin Money 1 Year Fixed Rate Cash ISA Exclusive (Issue 12), which is paying 5.05%. But remember you need to be a current account holder or open a new current account with the bank in order to qualify.

OakNorth retaliated by matching Shawbrook with a new ISA, also paying 4.72%, for those who don’t want to open a new current account in order to access a top paying cash ISA.


It’s similar, although not quite as dramatic in the 2-year table, with the top rate on offer increasing marginally, but it’s the same contenders pushing rates upwards.

OakNorth was dominating the table with its 2-year ISA paying 4.62% AER, but Shawbrook knocked them from pole position by the smallest of margins, launching an ISA paying 4.63% which is still leading the charge as we end the week.


Shawbrook and OakNorth are the main players in the 3-year table too and although this rivalry has pushed the top rate available up by a very small amount, this is better than rates falling!!

OakNorth was leading the table for most of the last couple of weeks with its ISA paying 4.40% but Shawbrook pipped them by launching an ISA paying 4.41%, taking pole position as we head into the weekend.


Unfortunately, the news is not as positive in the 5-year table as the top rate on offer, although still with Shawbrook, has fallen from 4.17% to 4.07% - illustrating that they were paying more than necessary to attract the cash. UBL UK had also fallen from 4.16% to 4.06% which I am sure influenced Shawbrook’s decision.

That's it for this week. We’ll be back with another update in two weeks. In the meantime, remember to keep an eye on the best buy tables.

*We are occasionally paid by some providers if you click through from our Best Buy Tables and open a savings or current account with them. We will never accept a payment that compromises in any way our independent, whole of market approach to providing information on savings products. For clarity we will indicate those companies who remunerate us with an asterisk (*).