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Manchester United bond pays 3% for double football victory

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
Virgin Money has launched a Manchester United Double Champion Bond which ups the interest rate to 3% if it wins the Premier League and Emirates FA Cup next season.

The Double Champions Bond offers a guaranteed 1% fixed for a year, with the rate increased to 3% gross/AER if Manchester United win both the Premier League title and Emirates FA Cup in the 2017/18 season.

Savers can open the account with £1 online or in a Virgin Money store but there are different bond maturity dates depending on where it’s opened – 20 July 2018 for online, and 1 August 2018 for in-store.

Withdrawals from the Double Champions Bond aren’t allowed during the fixed rate period.

Once opened, savers can benefit from the ‘United Rewards’ scheme which could give them a chance of winning prizes each month such as matchday tickets for Old Trafford and signed replica shirts.

The first Premier League matches are played on 12 August 2017 and the last ones on 13 May 2018. The FA Cup final is 19 May 2018.

How good is the offering?

The current top one-year fixed rate bond is offered from Al Rayan Bank, paying an expected profit rate of 2.02%. Otherwise Moneyfacts’ data shows OakNorth Bank pays 1.86% on its 12 month bond. Both expect or will pay a higher rate than Virgin Money’s guaranteed 1% offering.

However, if Manchester United were to win both football titles, securing savers’ 3% on their one-year fixed bond, this would make it a best buy. To get anywhere close to 3%, savers would need to tie their money for five, or even seven years: BLME’s seven-year bond pays an expected profit rate of 2.55% (min. £25,000), while Paragon Bank’s five-year offering pays 2.45% with a more affordable £1,000 starting deposit.

Last year as part of Virgin Money’s new partnerships with Manchester United, it launched the ‘Champions Bond’ offering 1.25% gross/AER fixed for one year. If the football club won the 2016/17 premiership title, Virgin Money would double the interest rate to 2.50% gross/AER which would apply until the maturity date.

As Manchester United failed to win the Premier League last year, savers received 1.25% AER – however, this was still a competitive rate.

‘We expect the bond to be really popular’

Rajesh Ahuja, savings director at Virgin Money, said: “With a competitive rate of interest, plus the potential for an additional double-interest bonus if Manchester United win the league and Emirates FA Cup, we expect the new Double Champions Bond to be really popular ahead of the start of the new season.”

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