🔔 Rates Rundown: swift action is needed to snap up the best rates

Author: Anna Bowes
25th September 2020

It’s been full of action over the last couple of weeks – mostly good news – although some of it short lived. Here’s a quick overview of the latest noteworthy activity.

RATES ARE CORRECT AS AT THE TIME OF PUBLICATION (25/09/2020). All up-to-date rates can be found on our Best Buy tables

Easy Access

As detailed in our article Grab it while you can – battle in the easy access market details, there was great excitement at the beginning of last week (15th September) as Skipton Building Society finally took on NS&I by launching a new Online Bonus Saver account paying 1.20% AER. However, the excitement was short lived and this news was soon overshadowed by the shocking news that NS&I will be decimating the rates on its variable accounts at the end of November.

So, although there has been plenty of activity with a number of new accounts launched and withdrawn, the end result is that Coventry Building Society is sitting in the top spot with its Double Access Saver (Online)(2) paying 1.10% AER.

Although the NS&I changes have not yet taken effect, we have removed them from our Best Buy tables.

Fixed Rate Bonds

It’s been a case of ‘blink and you might miss it’ in the Fixed Rate Best Buy tables this week. While the week has ended with 1 year best buy rates at a similar level to a couple of weeks ago, rates did spike for a while to over 1.30% AER. OakNorth, Paragon, Tandem, Smart Save and ZOPA have all been competing fiercely – but were clearly overwhelmed with demand and in some cases their accounts were withdrawn within days, if not hours.

The two and three year terms have been pretty busy too – and in fact the best rates available are currently the highest we have seen for three months. As we ended the week, Access Bank has swept in and taken the top spot in both tables, paying 1.40% AER for two years and 1.50% AER for three years. Better still, these accounts can be opened by post as well as online, for those who’d prefer the more traditional route to open their savings accounts.

Sharia Fixed Term Accounts

Let’s not forget the Sharia Accounts. BLME is currently offering the best rate on the market after increasing its rates last week. The 5 Years Premier Deposit Account is currently paying 1.60% AER.

Meanwhile, Gatehouse Bank is paying the best 1 year rate of 1.26% AER – and as well as being able to open this directly with Gatehouse Bank, the account is available via the Raisin UK platform – so there is a welcome bonus of up to £50 available to eligible new customers*.

Notice Accounts

It was disappointing to see the market-leading Secure Trust Bank notice accounts withdrawn earlier this week, however, Charter Savings Bank has stepped into the breach, launching new issues of its 120 Day Notice Account and 95 Day Notice Account. These accounts leapt straight to the top of the table paying 1.21% AER and 1.18% AER respectively.

Variable Rate ISAs

Although less dramatic, there have been a few improvements in the Variable Rate ISA table and new accounts from Skipton Building Society and Cynergy Bank are both paying 1% AER. While still below the non ISA equivalents, things are going in the right direction – let’s hope it continues.

Fixed Rate ISAs

Last but not least, and not to be left out, Best Buy Fixed Rate ISAs have also been creeping up across the board, with the two year top five increasing on average by around 10% - four out of the top five are now paying 1% or more – two weeks ago, the very best rate was only 0.95%.

It has been a busy week for keeping the Best Buy tables up to date – and while there was the ugly news about the NS&I accounts, overall things have continued to improve. However – it’s worth keeping an eye out for the very best rates, as they may continue to be snapped up.

*We are occasionally paid by some providers if you click through from our website 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 (*).