Save, make, understand money


Shawbrook’s 3.01% instant-access ISA and the week’s best savings accounts

Rebecca Goodman
Written By:
Rebecca Goodman

There has been a lot of action in the savings tables this week, especially when it comes to easy access cash ISAs, according to Moneyfacts.

Nudging into the top spot is Shawbrook Bank’s easy-access ISA paying 3.01% yet it has stiff competition.

Moneyfacts also revealed that stocks and shares ISAs experienced a loss in the year to February 2023, while the average cash ISA returned 1.71% over the same period.

Successive rate rises by the Bank of England mean providers have also been upping the amount of interest they pay.

There has also been a flurry of action in the instant-access accounts where savers can put their money away, earn interest on it, but also access it if they need to without paying a penalty.

Here we take a look at the best ISAs of the week and some of this week’s best new savings accounts, as picked by Moneyfacts.

The Moneyfacts best savings accounts of the week

This week there is a new issue of this account – Coventry Building Society’s Limited Access Saver (Online) (8) – which pays 3.10% on anniversary. It can be opened with £1 and savers can make up to six penalty-free withdrawals per year. You can choose from monthly interest or interest on maturity. It can be opened and managed online.

The Bank of London and the Middle East – 90 Day Notice Account (Issue 5) is also picked out by Moneyfacts, which pays 3.40% after a rate increase. It has a minimum opening amount of £10,000 and must be opened and managed online.

Another favourite is the Virgin Money – 1 Year Fixed Rate Cash E-ISA Issue 555 which pays 3.95% and has an option of monthly or yearly interest. You can open it with £1 and access is allowed with a 60-day loss of interest penalty. It can be opened and managed online.

The best easy-access cash ISAs

There’s a new issue of the Shawbrook Bank Easy Access Cash ISA (Issue 23) which pays 3.01% and is top of this week’s tables.

There is a minimum opening deposit of £1,000 and you’re allowed to transfer in money from other ISAs. The account must be opened online and can then be managed by the phone as well. Interest can be paid monthly or on the anniversary of the account.

The next-best accounts, which all pay 3%, are the following:

  1. Virgin Money’s Easy Access Cash ISA Exclusive Issue 2: This ISA has finally been knocked off the top spot but remains competitive, paying 3% AER. It pays interest yearly and there’s no minimum deposit required to open it. It’s only available to new and existing Virgin Money current account holders from 4 December 2019. The exception to this rule is any Virgin Money customers who originally opened a Clydesdale Bank, Yorkshire Bank or B current account. You can apply in a branch or online but it can also be managed via the post, phone, or the bank’s mobile app.
  2. Harpenden BS’s Triple Access Cash ISA: Paying 3% AER, this ISA can only be opened in a branch or via the post but you can also manage it online. The rate drops to 1.6% AER if four or more withdrawals are made each year. The minimum deposit is £1 and interest is paid yearly.
  3. Coventry BS’s HL Active Savings – Limited Access ISA and its Limited Access ISA (Online) (4): There are two options from Coventry BS, which both pay 3.00% AER, after a rate rise this week. The first compounds and pays interest monthly, while the online option is a flexible ISA and you can choose if interest is paid away or compounded either monthly or on anniversary. With both, you can only make six penalty-free withdrawals per year and subsequent withdrawals will be subject to a 50-day loss of interest penalty. They can only be opened through the Hargreaves Lansdown Active Savings platform.
  4. Cynergy Bank’s Online ISA (Issue 30): This ISA also pays 3% AER but it’s an online account, opened and managed through the bank’s app, and there are no penalties for withdrawals. The minimum deposit is £1 and it pays interest annually.

This week’s best fixed-rate cash ISAs

There’s no change from last week in the fixed-rate ISA table with Virgin Money and Gatehouse Bank continuing to dominate the best buy tables.

The Virgin Money 1 Year Fixed Rate Cash ISA Exclusive Issue 4 pays 4.25% and doesn’t require a minimum opening deposit. It also allows further additions to your funds while the issue remains open and within 30 days of the issue closing.

Early access will result in a 60-day loss of interest penalty while your rate is paid on maturity. It needs to be opened online or in a branch but can also be managed by post.

Gatehouse Bank’s two, three and five-year Woodland Cash ISAs are next in the charts. The Shari’ah-compliant provider will plant a tree in a UK woodland for every Woodland Cash ISA opened and funded.

It pays an expected profit rate of 4.20%, either monthly or on the anniversary of opening the accounts. Minimum deposits start at £1,000 while further additions are not allowed. These must be opened online and managed online or via mobile app.

If you require early access to your funds. The two-year ISA imposes a 180-day loss of profit penalty, the three-year bond imposes a 270-day loss, while the five-year option will enforce a 365-day loss of profit penalty.

This week’s best notice accounts

For notice accounts, Moneyfacts tables are unchanged this week.

The Aldermore 30 Day Notice Account remains in the top spot with an AER of 2.80%. It has a minimum opening deposit of £1,000 with interest paid away or compounded monthly or on anniversary. Withdrawals are subject to a 30-day notice period, or funds can be accessed earlier subject to a 30-day loss of interest. It can only be opened and managed online.

The second best goes to the Furness BS’s 45 Day Notice Cash ISA paying 3.00% AER. It has a minimum deposit of £1,000 and you need to open this one in a branch or by post. It can also be managed over the phone once opened.