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The best savings and ISA accounts this week

Samantha Partington
Written By:
Samantha Partington

Rates continue to rise on top-paying savings accounts across the board even for those who want immediate access to their cash, as Santander swoops in to push up instant access rates.

Elsewhere rates for one-year fixed rate cash ISAs edged up as a handful of lenders battle it out pushing rates closer to the 6% mark.

It’s positive news all round, but some of the higher payers require a hefty opening balance while others have restrictions on withdrawals which, once exceeded, could mean your best buy rate comes tumbling down.

Here are this week’s best savings and ISA accounts, according to Moneyfacts’ analysis.

The best cash savings accounts

Santander takes the top spot this week with its limited edition Easy Access Saver (issue 3) paying 5.20% AER annually. Savers can choose monthly interest at the reduced rate of 5.08% gross/ 5.20% AER. It’s worth noting that no interest is paid on balances of £250,000 or more.

Hot on its heels, are a duo of building societies; the Mansfield and Furness BS. Both are offering savers 5% AER payable annually. Mansfield savers can only open their accounts in branch or by post. The Furness offers an extra option of telephone access.

Shawbrook Bank is paying 4.93% on its Issue 36 account.

The best fixed rate bonds

NS&I retains its position as the best paying provider of one-year fixed rate bonds.

New issues of NS&I’s one-year fixed rate Guaranteed Growth Bonds and Guaranteed Income Bonds pay 6.20% gross/AER and 6.03% gross/6.20% AER respectively.

These are both the highest ever interest rates for both bonds which first went on sale in 2008, and the most competitive one-year fixed rate savings accounts on the market.

Other providers offering more than 6% on one-year money include Ahli United Bank paying 6.10% and Habib Bank Zurich which pays 6.03%.

The best rates on two-year fixed rate bonds are lower than NS&I’s one-year offering, but offer savers with a range of opening deposits the opportunity to still earn interest of above 6% on deposits.

Close Brothers, Ford Money and Ikano Bank pay 6.05% AER. To open your Close Brothers account, you’ll need a minimum deposit of £10,000. Ford Money requires £500 while Ikano savers must deposit £1,000.

When it comes to notice savings accounts, the highest paying is the Oxbury Bank Personal 180 Day Notice Account (Issue 15) paying 5.59% on a minimum of £1,000.

The shortest-notice period comes from the RCI Bank E-Volve Savings 14 Day Notice Account which pays 4.50% and requires £1,000 to open.

The best instant-access cash ISAs

The top spot for easy-access ISAs this week goes to Moneybox. It pays 4.65% AER on deposits of at least £500. The rate includes a 0.85% bonus paid for the first year.

Despite the account paying the highest rate of interest, there is a catch when it comes to withdrawals. Only three withdrawals are permitted in 12 months. From your fourth withdrawal, your rate drops to 0.75%. It resets yearly on the date you opened your cash ISA.

Shawbrook Bank’s Easy Access Cash ISA – Issue 25 is the next best cash ISA paying 4.58% on a minimum of £1,000; this account can be opened online and managed on the phone.

Leeds Building Society (issue 64) and Cynergy Bank (issue 41) are both paying 4.55% on their online accounts.

The best fixed-rate cash ISAs

It’s been a close run race to gain top position in Moneyfacts’ one-year fixed ISA chart this week but Paragon Bank has pipped Virgin Money to the post with a rate of 5.82% AER on deposits of £500 or more. Virgin Money is paying a respectable 5.80% (issue 6) on opening balances of just £1.

Shawbrook Bank’s 1 Year Fixed Rate Cash ISA Bond Issue 80, meanwhile, is paying 5.78%.

In Moneyfacts’ two-year fixed ISA chart, Charter Savings Bank moves down a place to second as Paragon swoops in to bag first place with a rate of 5.82% AER on balances of £500 or more. Charter’s online ISA is still paying 5.80%. This account requires a larger deposit of £5,000 to open and manage online, after which interest can either be received monthly or on anniversary. You’ll have 30 days from opening to make any further additions to this opening amount. As for earlier access, this will incur a 180-day loss of interest penalty.

For another consecutive week, Zopa provides the best rate for both a three-year and a five-year fixed ISA. However, as its Smart ISA – 3 and 5 Year pots pay 5.56% AER and 5.26% AER respectively, keep in mind it’s possible to secure a higher rate with a shorter bond.

Nevertheless, should you wish to open either of these accounts, you’ll need to already have or be prepared to open a Smart Saver via the Smart Savings Hub on the Zopa app.

The best notice cash ISAs

Aldermore maintains its grip on the top spot for yet another week, providing the best rate for an ISA needing up to 30 days’ notice, with its 30 Day Notice Cash ISA Issue 12 paying 4.25% AER.

Interest can either be received monthly or on anniversary after opening online with an initial deposit of £1,000. While further additions to this opening amount are allowed without restriction, 30 days’ notice is needed before making a withdrawal. If you need to withdraw funds sooner than this, earlier access can be gained subject to 30 days’ loss of interest.

A higher rate of 4.50% AER can be secured with Stafford Railway Building Society, but this account requires 60 days’ notice of withdrawals. Its Cash ISA 60 Day Notice Account can be opened online, in branch or by post with a minimum deposit of £100.