Savings rates worst in a decade

Savings rates worst in a decade

11:35 AM, 30th June 2020, About 3 years ago 2

Text Size

The velocity of savings rate cuts on variable rate deals during the first six months of 2020 is officially the worst in over a decade for savers. Due to these relentless rate cuts, savers are being urged to act and switch if they are getting a poor return on their hard-earned cash. Indeed, the latest analysis by reveals that variable rate savings accounts have dropped by the largest amount seen over the first six months of any year since 2009.

Those savers looking at fixed rates will also find they have fallen significantly over the past six months, and in fact average rates have fallen by the largest proportion over the first half of any year since 2009. In terms of the worst half-year, the largest falls were seen during the second half of 2012, in the aftermath of the Funding for Lending Scheme. Savers coming off a fixed rate imminently would be wise to check the latest deals, as rates could fall further still in the weeks to come.

Savings market analysis
Average rates Jan-09 Jan-15 Jan-19 Jan-20 Today
Easy access 1.55% 0.65% 0.64% 0.59% 0.24%
Notice account 1.80% 0.74% 1.04% 1.03% 0.57%
Easy access ISA 2.56% 1.13% 0.94% 0.85% 0.37%
Notice ISA 2.96% 1.24% 1.14% 1.12% 0.60%
One-year fixed bond 3.49% 1.42% 1.43% 1.20% 0.71%
Longer-term fixed bond 3.38% 2.06% 1.86% 1.48% 0.92%
One-year fixed ISA 3.43% 1.46% 1.35% 1.15% 0.63%
Longer-term fixed ISA 3.43% 1.92% 1.60% 1.37% 0.81%
*Longer-term fixed bonds or ISAs are those with terms over 550 days. Average interest rates based on a £5,000 deposit as at the start of the month unless stated otherwise.  Source:


Savings average rate difference % rise/fall
Average rates Jan – Jun 2009 Jan – Jun 2015 Jan – Jun 2019 Jan – Jun 2020 Jan 2020 – Today
Easy access -0.85% 0.00% -0.02% -0.29% -0.35%
Notice account -0.94% 0.07% 0.06% -0.34% -0.46%
Easy access ISA -1.26% 0.00% 0.02% -0.40% -0.48%
Notice ISA -1.21% -0.03% 0.04% -0.43% -0.52%
One-year fixed bond -0.52% -0.02% -0.01% -0.34% -0.49%
Longer-term fixed bond -0.02% -0.08% -0.05% -0.43% -0.56%
One-year fixed ISA -0.68% -0.03% -0.02% -0.40% -0.52%
Longer-term fixed ISA -0.30% -0.11% -0.04% -0.44% -0.56%
*Longer-term fixed bonds or ISAs are those with terms over 550 days. Average interest rates based on a £5,000 deposit as at the start of the month.  Source:

Rachel Springall, Finance Expert at, said:

“Savers will be in for a shock to find the first six months of 2020 have been the worst for rate cuts in over a decade. Indeed, all average rates have fallen between January and June this year, but the falls are the largest we have seen since 2009, after the financial crash. This demonstrates how much the market has been impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic and base rate cuts, and it will leave savers feeling frustrated and disappointed.

“These rate cuts should be more than enough reason to give savers a push to switch their deal if they are getting a poor return on their hard-earned cash. Indeed, on an easy access account, savers could be earning as little as 0.01%, such as with NatWest, but the best rate on the market pays 1.15% from National Savings and Investments (NS&I) – on a £20,000 deposit, that is a difference in interest over 12 months of £228. If savers were looking to lock their cash away over the next 18 months, then the best deal comes from Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME), paying 1.15% as an expected profit rate, which is 0.44% more than the average rate today.

“If savers are looking for a decent return but do not wish to lock their money away for a year or more, then a notice account could be a good bridge between fixed and easy access accounts. One example of a deal with a short notice term is ICICI Bank UK’s 45-day notice account, which pays 1.24% gross monthly and is available through Raisin UK.

“Those savers who utilise their ISA allowance may feel despondent, as average returns have fallen between 0.48% (easy access ISAs) and 0.56% (longer-term fixed ISAs) since the start of 2020. The top easy access ISA today comes from Al Rayan Bank, which pays 1.00% as an expected profit rate, 0.63% more than the average easy access ISA rate. Despite this, savers may not find a fixed rate ISA a promising choice, as fixed rates have plummeted on one and five-year ISAs by 0.52% and 0.56% respectively since the start of 2020. If savers hunt down the top fixed ISA rate today, then they will find Shawbrook Bank at the top of the market, with its seven-year fixed ISA that pays 1.25% gross on its anniversary or 1.24% monthly.

“It is imperative that savers act quickly to acquire the top rates on the market regardless of which type of savings account they choose, as there seems no end to the downward trend. Due to the uncertainties that the Coronavirus pandemic has instilled, it is more important than ever before for consumers to build up an emergency fund that they can dip in to should they run into any financial difficulties in the months to come.”

Share This Article


Seething Landlord

13:16 PM, 30th June 2020, About 3 years ago

I believe in my simple way that there are two main reasons for the current low interest rates, both designed to stimulate economic activity - (1) to enable Government to borrow the vast sums that they need at minimal cost and (2) to encourage us all to spend rather than save.

We all need to keep enough in reserve to provide a cushion against unexpected expenses but it seems to be an ideal time to pay down debt rather than sit on a pile of cash that is constantly eroded by inflation. When we are thrashing around looking for less than an extra 1% interest on our savings we have clearly gone mad. At the current best rate of 1.15% the total gross interest on £20,000 is a meagre £230 p.a. and in real terms after taking minimal inflation of 2.5% into account the £20,000 will only be worth £19,500 after one year.

I was reminded the other day that when I was holding a legacy in trust in the early 1990s I was easily able to achieve interest from Building Societies of around 10%, a salutary lesson that nothing is certain in the financial world. Leveraged landlords beware.


13:17 PM, 4th July 2020, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Seething Landlord at 30/06/2020 - 13:16
"(1) to enable Government to borrow the vast sums that they need at minimal cost" or more cynically to continue the banks ability to "borrow" at next to nothing from the Government and continue to stiff the public by maintained high lending rates; as of last September the AVERAGE APR on credit casrds 24.7% the highest in 13 years, didn;t someone throw the money lenders out of the temple a couple of millenia ago?

Leave Comments

In order to post comments you will need to Sign In or Sign Up for a FREE Membership


Don't have an account? Sign Up

Landlord Tax Planning Book Now