Savings update: Challenger banks top the savings best buy tables

15 November 2016

Challenger banks remain top of the best buy tables and are unlikely to be dislodged anytime soon.

Big banks and building societies continue to cut rates, propelling the newer banks to the top of the best buy tables on fixed rate bonds.

The top-paying one-year bonds come from Swedish-owned Ikano Bank and online Atom Bank at 1.4% before tax, closely followed by Charter Savings Bank at 1.38% before tax.


With Atom you have to run your account on your phone through its app; with Ikano your money is covered by the Swedish compensation scheme rather than our home-grown Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Unlike most European schemes, Sweden will cover deposits from the UK up to £75,000 per person, rather than €100,000 Euros. 

Best deal in the high street comes from Metro Bank at 1.2%, while traditional high street banks and building societies pay less. Leeds BS pays 0.9%  and Nationwide 0.8%.

Atom and Ikano banks pay 1.55% for two years, and Charter Savings Bank and Secure Trust offer 1.51%.

On easy-access accounts, 1% is the top online rate on offer from RCI Bank, with your money covered by the European compensation scheme. The next best deal is 0.8% from Kent Reliance and Newcastle Building Society.

National Savings & Investments Income Bonds pay a top 1%, but you have to take the interest each month – it can’t be added to your account.

The top deal on tax-free easy-access cash Isas is 1.1% tax-free from Coventry Building Society, but you can’t transfer your existing cash Isas into this account. The top deal which accepts transfers is 0.95% from Sainsbury’s Bank.

On fixed rate cash Isas the top one-year rate comes from Tesco Bank at 1.11%, followed by Hodge Bank at 1%. Aldermore Bank pays a top 1.15% for two years.

This story was originally written for our sister magazine, Money Observer.

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