Save, make, understand money


This week’s top savings rates including a new 4.35% two-year deal

Rebecca Goodman
Written By:
Rebecca Goodman

Virgin Money remains at the top of the tables this week with its one and two-year cash ISAs yet there are some strong contenders just behind it.

While the ISAs from Virgin Money are market leading, there are restrictions over who can access these accounts.

There have also been lots of changes across the savings tables.

After a rate rise, Close Brothers Bank now pays 4.35% gross on its two-year fixed-rate account while even after a drop in interest of 0.05%, the one-year fixed-rate account from SmartSave still pays 4.16%.

Following the Bank of England’s hike to the base rate yesterday, it’s likely more savings providers will react in the next week by upping the interest they pay.

Here we look at what Moneyfacts has picked for this week’s best ISA accounts.

The best easy-access cash ISAs

Virgin Money remains at the top of the table this week with its Easy Access Cash ISA Exclusive Issue 2. The account pays interest yearly and there’s no minimum deposit required to open it.

But 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.

The next-best accounts as picked by Moneyfacts are the following:

  1. Cynergy Bank’s Online ISA (Issue 29): Paying 2.85% AER, this account is tied with two others for the second spot. It pays interest yearly on initial deposits of at least £1. You can only open and manage it via the Digipass or Cynergy Bank Authenticator App.
  2. Paragon Bank’s Triple Access Cash ISA – Issue 12: Interest of 2.85% can be paid away or compounded, either monthly or on the anniversary of the account opening on a minimum of £1. The rate drops to 0.75% if more than three withdrawals are made in a year. This ISA can only be opened and managed online.
  3. Newbury BS Easy Access Cash ISA: Also offering 2.85% you’ll need a minimum opening deposit of £50 with this account and can have interest paid away or compounded yearly. It can only be opened in a branch or via the post and can also be managed online.
  4. Shawbrook Bank’s Easy Access Cash ISA – Issue 22: Paying 2.77% AER on a minimum opening deposit of £1,000, interest is paid away or compounded either monthly or on anniversary. It needs to be opened online but can be managed on the phone as well.

This week’s best fixed-rate cash ISAs

You’ll usually get a better rate of interest if you can put your money away for longer and Virgin Money and Gatehouse Bank continue to dominate the best buy tables for fixed-rate accounts.

The Virgin Money 1 Year Fixed Rate Cash ISA Exclusive Issue 4 is one of the best fixed-rate accounts on the market, according to Moneyfacts. It 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.

The next-best accounts are as follows:

  1. Virgin Money 2 Year Fixed Rate Cash E-ISA Issue 550: Paying 4.11%, interest can be paid monthly or yearly with this ISA. The minimum deposit is £1 and further additions are allowed for 30 days from account opening. Early access to this internet-operated account will result in a 90-day loss of interest.
  2. Gatehouse Bank Woodland Cash ISA: Topping the three and five-year charts again this week, this Shari’ah-compliant provider will plant a tree in a UK woodland for every Woodland Cash ISA opened and funded. Both accounts pay an expected profit rate of 4.20%, either monthly or on the anniversary of opening the account. Minimum deposits start at £1,000 while further additions are not allowed. There is a 270-day loss of profit penalty for early access of the three-year account, while the five year option will enforce a 365-day loss of profit. Both accounts must be opened online and managed online or via mobile app.
  3. Close Brothers Bank 5 Year Fixed Rate Cash ISA: Paying 4.20% this account matches the five-year ISA from Gatehouse Bank. You’ll need £10,000 to open this ISA, which compounds and pays interest on anniversary. Further additions are allowed for 10 days from account opening but earlier access will result in closure of the account and a 365-day loss of interest penalty. It can be opened online and managed over the phone.

This week’s best notice accounts

The Aldermore 30 Day Notice Account remains in the top spot this week 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 only be opened and managed online.

The second best again 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.

The Moneyfacts best savings accounts of the week

Picked out by Moneyfacts this week is the 2-Year Fixed Rate Bond from Close Brothers Bank which pays 4.35% gross. Earlier access to the account, which must be opened online, is not permitted but you can make further additions for 10 days after the account is open.

For those who want earlier access to their money, the 1 Year Fixed Rate Saver from SmartSave pays 4.16%, after a fall of 0.05% this week. It has a minimum opening amount of £10,000 and is opened and managed online. There is the option to make further additions for 14 days from account opening.

Another pick from Moneyfacts is the Tesco Bank 12 Month Fixed Rate Cash ISA which pays 3.70% interest on anniversary. Applicants can apply online or over the phone and earlier access is permitted, subject to account closure and a loss of interest penalty. Investors are also able to make further additions and transfers in for 30 days from account opening.

For savers after a notice account, Allica Bank’s – 95-Day Notice Savings Account (Issue 1) pays 3.40% and has a minimum opening deposit of £10,000. Further additions are allowed while the issue remains open. It must be opened and managed online.

A boost to Paragon Bank’s Triple Access Account – Issue 11 sees it paying 2.91%. It has a minimum opening deposit of £1 and three withdrawals are permitted per year. It’s opened and managed online.