There is news to report almost across the board this week – and most of it is good. While a few providers have retreated to consider their next move, far more have either improved what they were offering to advance themselves in the best buys – or launched new accounts in order to be included for the first time in a while.
A new account from Principality last week broke up the top of the easy access NS&I monopoly. The new Principality Online Limited Access account is paying 0.90%.
However, the big news this week - and hot off the press - is the launch of the new Skipton Online Bonus Saver - Issue 7, paying 1.20% AER. This has leapfrogged all the other easy access accounts to topple NS&I from its top spot.
As the name suggests, this account can only be opened online, but the minimum is just £1. The rate includes a bonus of 0.50% for the first 12 months.
There was flurry of activity at the end of last week, which means it’s been all change at the top of the 1-year table in particular.
Close Brothers Savings had a very brief appearance on the 1-year best buy table – but was swiftly ousted by Kent Reliance and then Raisin UK which launched a briefly market-leading 1-year bond through Charter Savings Bank. This bond is paying 1.22% AER but there is also a welcome bonus of up to £50 up for grabs for new customers of Raisin.
It wasn’t over there though. At the end of the week, both Secure Trust Bank and Aldermore weighed in with new bonds paying 1.20% AER, which meant that all top five accounts in this category were paying 1.20% or more.
But Secure Trust Bank was not satisfied with 2nd place, so on Saturday increased the rate on its 1-year bond to 1.25% AER and on its 2-year bond to 1.35% AER, Both these bonds have taken the top place in the respective best buy tables.
For those looking for a longer-term bond, UBL UK continues to dominate proceedings and is still offering 1.40% AER for 3 years and 1.50% AER for 5 years.
There has been quite a lot of activity in the short-term fixed rate ISA market and, as things stand, the lowest-paying 1-year ISA in our best buy table is paying 0.80% - up from 0.65% just two weeks ago. In the meantime, Secure Trust Bank and Hampshire Trust Bank have battled it out for the top spot, with Hampshire Trust Bank coming out the victor in the 1 Year best buy table, with its 1 Year ISA Bond (Issue 18) paying 0.90% AER.
Hampshire Trust also made it a double this week by taking pole position in our 2 year table, paying 0.95% AER.
And over three years, Secure Trust Bank has stolen the long-standing crown from UBL UK by squeezing into the top spot, improving the rate on its 3 Year Fixed Rate Cash ISA (20.Oct.2023) to a market-leading 1.11% AER. This positive move means that for the first time in months, all of the top five 3-year Fixed Rate ISAs are paying 1% or more. This is still less than the non-ISA bond equivalents, but nevertheless another step in the right direction.
Best Buy notice accounts had a big boost this week. First of all, another notice account joined the 1.10% party at the top of the table – Aldermore increased the rate on its 120 Day Notice account.
However, Secure Trust Bank put an end to the collaboration by launching two new notice accounts, which are now sitting at the top of the table. The 90 Day Notice Account is paying 1.18% AER and the 60 Day Notice Account is paying 1.16% AER.
The Variable Rate ISA table is filled with easy access ISAs this week, following a provider jumping into the top spot. Coventry Building Society has shunted Cynergy Bank into second place with the launch of its Triple Access Isa (Online), paying 0.96% AER.
The bottom line is that for those who are prepared to shop around, things continue to improve. And even though some of the top rates on offer haven’t increased, there are certainly more accounts available paying better rates. With the high street banks still paying as little as 0.01% AER, it definitely pays to shop around.