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The Best Bank in Australia

Information verified correct on January 20th, 2017

Which is the best bank in Australia? It may not even be a bank.

What makes a bank ‘the best bank’? Is it the number of products, low rates, a regional touch or all of these things combined. Best is such a subjective term, it all depends on what’s important to you. Think about these points when you’re evaluating banks side by side.

NAB Classic Banking

New Bank Account Offer

No monthly account fee with no minimum deposit. Your Visa debit card unlocks special privileges worldwide with the HSBC home&Away Privilege Program.

  • Free use at over 3,400 NAB and RediATMs in Australia
  • 24/7 Mobile Banking, including Quick Balance checker
  • Tap and Pay for Android
  • Free linked NAB Visa debit card with payWave

    Banks versus nonbanks

    We use bank as an umbrella term for financial institutions that offer banking products. There are hundreds of customer owned banking institutions operating in regional communities and big cities all over Australia. There are credit unions, mutual societies, friendly societies, cooperatives to think about as well as small local banks, foreign banks and the Big Four.

    Rates last updated January 20th, 2017
    $
    $
    months
    Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Interest Earned
    Easy Street Easy Savings
    Ongoing, variable rate of 2.00% with no fees and available on balances up to $5,000,000.
    2.00% 2.00% 0.00% $0 $0 / $2 More
    Easy Street Bonus Saver Account
    Ongoing, variable when you deposit 50+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
    2.65% 0.01% 2.64% $0 $0 / $2 More
    Community First Bonus Saver
    Ongoing, variable 2.40% p.a. when you deposit $20+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
    2.40% 0.10% 2.30% $0 $0 / $0 More
    Community First Christmas Cracker
    Ongoing, variable 1.50% p.a.. Available on the entire balance.
    1.50% 1.50% 0.00% $0 $0 / $0 More
    Community First Money Market Account
    Ongoing, variable 1.25% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    1.25% 1.25% 0.00% $0 $0 / $100,000 More
    CUA Youth eSaver Account
    Ongoing, variable 4.00% p.a. Available on balances up to $5,000.
    4.00% 4.00% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
    CUA eSaver Plus Account
    Ongoing, variable 2.75% p.a. when you make a total deposit of at least $200 and no withdrawals in a calendar month. Available on balances up to $1,000,000.
    2.75% 0.25% 2.50% $0 $1 / $1 More
    IMB Reward Saver Account
    Introductory rate of 2.40% p.a. for the first 4 months when you deposit $50+ each month and make no withdrawals per month. Available on balance of $5,000 or higher.
    2.40% 1.40% 1.00% $0 $5,000 / $0 More
    IMB DIY Super
    Introductory rate of 2.25% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.50% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    2.25% 1.50% 0.75% $0 $5,000 / $1 More
    Greater Bank Bonus Saver
    Ongoing, variable 2.20% p.a. when you deposit $1+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
    2.20% 2.20% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
    Rates last updated January 20th, 2017
    $
    Monthly Account Fee Debit Card Access ATM Withdrawal Fee Fee Free Deposit p.m. Details
    NAB Classic Banking
    Tap and Pay with your Android Phone using NAB Pay.
    No minimum deposit required.
    Visa $0 $0 No monthly account fees, ever. Free use at over 3,400 NAB and RediATMs Australia wide and $0 overdrawn fees. Open More
    ING DIRECT Orange Everyday Account
    $75 cash bonus up for grabs
    Get a competitive ongoing variable rate when linked with a Savings Maximiser.
    Visa $0 $1,000 No monthly fees, and you can use any ATM in Australia for free when you deposit $1,000 each month e.g your salary. Open More
    Bankwest Easy Transaction Account
    Pay no ATM fees at over 10,000 ATMs in Australia (conditions apply).
    Mastercard $0 $2,000 Minimum deposit of $2,000 per month needed to waive the monthly account fee otherwise a $6 monthly fee applies. No ATM fee applicable at Bankwest, CBA, NAB, ANZ, Westpac, St.George, BoM and BankSA ATMs in Australia. Open More
    ANZ Access Advantage
    Take advantage of Apple Pay by linking your ANZ Visa Debit card to an eligible iPhone and seamlessly pay for purchases with your phone.
    Visa $0 $2,000 No monthly account fee when you deposit at least $2,000 per month. Other fee waivers available based on your personal situation. Open More
    HSBC Day to Day Transaction Account
    Your Visa debit card unlocks special privileges worldwide with the HSBC home&Away Privilege Program.
    Visa $0 $0 $0 monthly fees. No ATM fees at over 3,000 HSBC, Westpac, St.George, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA ATMs. Open More
    Bankwest Qantas Transaction Account
    Earn Qantas Points on eligible purchases and on your account balance.
    Conditions apply.
    Mastercard $0 $2,000 No monthly fees when you deposit at least $2,000 into your account each month. Free access to Bankwest and CommBank ATMs in Australia. No overseas ATM withdrawal fees (charged by Bankwest) though third party fees may apply. Open More
    Bank Australia mySaver Account
    Ongoing, variable 2.60% p.a. when you deposit $10+ each month. Available on the entire balance and to customers under the age of 25.
    N/A $1.30 Open More
    St.George Express Freedom Account
    Convenience of cardless cash and shop securely with your Visa debit card.
    Customise SMS and email alerts.
    Visa $0 $1,000 No ATM fees when using St.George / Westpac / BankSA ATMs. No monthly service fee if you deposit a minimum of $1,000 per month otherwise $3 monthly fee applies. Open More
    St.George Complete Freedom Account
    10% Cash back for online gaming purchases.
    Waived account keeping fees when minimum deposit is met with no minimum balance.
    Visa $0 $2,000 No account keeping fees, if you deposit $2,000 per month plus no minimum balance required. No ATM fees when using St.George, Westpac and BankSA ATMs. Open More
    Bank Australia Bonus Saver Account
    Ongoing, variable 2.60% p.a. when you deposit at least $100 and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
    N/A $1.30 Open More
    Rates last updated January 20th, 2017
    $
    $
    months
    Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Interest Earned
    ME Online Savings Account
    Ongoing, variable 3.05% p.a. rate when you link to a ME Everyday Transaction account and make a weekly purchase with your Debit MasterCard using tap & go. Available on balances up to $250,000.
    3.05% 1.30% 1.75% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    ING DIRECT Savings Maximiser
    Ongoing, variable 3.00% p.a. when you link to an ING Orange Everyday bank account and deposit $1,000+ each month. Available on balances up to $100,000.
    3.00% 1.60% 1.40% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    Bankwest Hero Saver
    Ongoing, variable 2.65% p.a. rate when you deposit at least $200 each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $250,000.
    2.65% 0.01% 2.64% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    ANZ Online Saver
    Introductory rate of 2.65% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 1.25% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    2.65% 1.25% 1.40% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    HSBC Serious Saver
    Introductory rate of 2.25% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.60% p.a. Available on balances below $1,000,000.
    2.25% 1.60% 0.65% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    Westpac eSaver
    Introductory rate of 2.51% p.a. for 5 months, reverting to a rate of 1.05% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    2.51% 1.05% 1.46% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    ANZ Progress Saver
    Ongoing, variable 1.91% p.a. when you link to any Australian everyday bank account and deposit $0+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
    1.91% 0.01% 1.90% $0 $10 / $10 Open More
    Bank of Melbourne Maxi Saver
    Introductory rate of 3.00% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 1.05% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    3.00% 1.05% 1.95% $0 $1 / $1 Open More
    BankSA Maxi Saver
    Introductory rate of 3.00% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to a rate of 1.05% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    3.00% 1.05% 1.95% $0 $1 / $1 Open More
    Bank of Melbourne Incentive Saver
    Ongoing, variable 1.75% p.a. when you make at least one deposit and no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
    1.75% 0.01% 1.74% $0 $1 / $1 Open More
    Westpac Reward Saver
    Ongoing, variable 1.75% p.a. when you deposit at least $50 and make no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
    1.75% 0.01% 1.74% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    RaboDirect High Interest Savings Account
    Introductory rate of 3.05% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 2.00% p.a. Available on balances below $250,000
    3.05% 2.00% 1.05% $0 $0 / $0 More
    Rates last updated January 20th, 2017
    $
    $
    months
    Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Interest Earned
    Easy Street Easy Savings
    Ongoing, variable rate of 2.00% with no fees and available on balances up to $5,000,000.
    2.00% 2.00% 0.00% $0 $0 / $2 More
    Easy Street Bonus Saver Account
    Ongoing, variable when you deposit 50+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
    2.65% 0.01% 2.64% $0 $0 / $2 More
    Community First Bonus Saver
    Ongoing, variable 2.40% p.a. when you deposit $20+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
    2.40% 0.10% 2.30% $0 $0 / $0 More
    Community First Christmas Cracker
    Ongoing, variable 1.50% p.a.. Available on the entire balance.
    1.50% 1.50% 0.00% $0 $0 / $0 More
    Community First Money Market Account
    Ongoing, variable 1.25% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    1.25% 1.25% 0.00% $0 $0 / $100,000 More
    CUA Youth eSaver Account
    Ongoing, variable 4.00% p.a. Available on balances up to $5,000.
    4.00% 4.00% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
    CUA eSaver Plus Account
    Ongoing, variable 2.75% p.a. when you make a total deposit of at least $200 and no withdrawals in a calendar month. Available on balances up to $1,000,000.
    2.75% 0.25% 2.50% $0 $1 / $1 More
    IMB Reward Saver Account
    Introductory rate of 2.40% p.a. for the first 4 months when you deposit $50+ each month and make no withdrawals per month. Available on balance of $5,000 or higher.
    2.40% 1.40% 1.00% $0 $5,000 / $0 More
    IMB DIY Super
    Introductory rate of 2.25% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.50% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    2.25% 1.50% 0.75% $0 $5,000 / $1 More
    Greater Bank Bonus Saver
    Ongoing, variable 2.20% p.a. when you deposit $1+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
    2.20% 2.20% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
    Rates last updated January 20th, 2017
    $
    $
    months
    Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Interest Earned
    ANZ Progress Saver
    Ongoing, variable 1.91% p.a. when you link to any Australian everyday bank account and deposit $0+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
    1.91% 0.01% 1.90% $0 $10 / $10 Open More
    ANZ Online Saver
    Introductory rate of 2.65% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 1.25% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    2.65% 1.25% 1.40% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    Westpac Reward Saver
    Ongoing, variable 1.75% p.a. when you deposit at least $50 and make no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
    1.75% 0.01% 1.74% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    Westpac eSaver
    Introductory rate of 2.51% p.a. for 5 months, reverting to a rate of 1.05% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
    2.51% 1.05% 1.46% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
    Commonwealth Bank Goal Saver Account
    Ongoing, variable 1.80% p.a. rate when you deposit at least $200 p/m with no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $100,000.
    1.80% 0.01% 1.79% $0 $0 / $0 More
    Commonwealth Bank NetBank Saver
    Introductory rate of 2.50% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to a rate of 1.05% p.a. Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
    2.50% 1.05% 1.45% $0 $0 / $1 More
    NAB iSaver
    Introductory rate of 1.90% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.20% p.a. Available on balances below $1,000,000.
    1.90% 1.20% 0.70% $0 $0 / $0 More
    NAB Reward Saver
    Ongoing, variable 2.70% p.a. when you link to NAB transaction account and deposit $200+ each month and make no withdrawals in the month . Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
    2.70% 0.50% 2.20% $0 $0 / $0 More

    What are the pros and cons of banks

    Pros

    • Mainstream banks have more money to develop online banking facilities.
    • Large choice of banking products and financial services.
    • Large branch and ATM presence.

    Cons

    • Fees can be higher what’s charged to members of community banks.
    • Bank customers are customers. Members of community banking institutions own a part of the bank and have a say about how the organisation is run.

    What are the pros and cons to customer-owned banking?

    Pros

    • Members benefit from bank profits through lower rates and fees. Customer owned banks can offer lower rates than big banking institutions.

    Cons

    • Limited choice of products.
    • Limited branch access.
    Back to top

    There’s no loyalty in banking, financial institutions have different strengths

    Some banks offer great rates on your deposit, non-banks credit cards are often market leading and online only mortgage lenders can give you a cheap loan, the point is to remember to shop around to get the best deal. Don’t be afraid to use the services of a number of different institutions for your banking and personal finance needs. A little extra time using a comparison service before you apply for a financial product can save you money in fees and interest.

    Back to top

    What do you want as a customer?

    Ask yourself what you want as a customer to find yourself the best bank.

    • A good rate. Customer owned banking institutions can offer better rates and fees than big banks. Every customer is a part owner and profits benefit members through better rates and lower fees.
    • Lot of products. Are you looking for a bank that can offer a wide mix of products such as savings accounts, platinum and rewards credit cards, home loan and personal loan products, or do you want a financial institution that offers fewer products at a lower cost.

    Large institutions like the Big Four Australian banks offer products and services that suit a number of different demographics; whereas credit unions and mutuals have fewer products packed with benefits. In some cases it can be cost effective to show customer loyalty. For example, the Commonwealth Bank have a credit card annual fee waiver offer for existing customers.

    • A superior online experience. When was the last time you actually went to a bank branch, and what was it for? You can open a bank account online with little, if any, face to face interaction with another person. The institution’s investment in online banking, while not a deal breaker — yet — is becoming increasingly important.
    • Decent customer service. Excellent customer service is expected when you visit a branch at any financial institution, but how does the level of service extend to the institution’s call centre team. The Big Four bank call centre staff are based in Australia, international banks have offshore representatives. Some customer owned banks may refer your call to a third party if it’s outside of business hours.
    Back to top

    How do I compare the best banks in Australia?

    Here are a few ways you can compare different banks and financial institutions. Ask yourself:

    • Do they charge monthly fees? Banks and fees and almost synonymous. There are institutions that make low or no fees a point of difference. Online lenders don’t have the overheads of a bricks and mortar bank so they can pass the savings onto consumers.
    • How big is it's ATM network? How many places can you withdraw your money for free? Banks and nonbanks have different partnerships and arrangements with other financial institutions. For example, some smaller financial institutions have agreements with rediATM, which is a third party ATM operator in Australia, whereas banks operate their own ATM network, for example St.George bank customers can use Westpac ATMs because St.George is part of the Westpac banking group.
    • How superior is their online service? Face to face banking is becoming less common. For example, you can apply for a credit card, make payments and repayments, apply for a credit limit increase or decrease just using the internet. If this is how you do your banking, institutions with an enhanced online experience may appeal to you.
    • What other products does the financial institution offer? It can be both convenient and cost effective to hold your loan accounts, everyday banking and savings accounts with the same financial provider. As well as getting a few points off your loan rates and discounted annual fees for credit cards, you can also make instantaneous transfers between accounts.

    If you’re not happy with your bank, what’s stopping you from making the switch? Whether it’s monthly fees, transaction fees or credit card or mortgage interest, it’s easier than ever to switch banks get the best deal.

    Shirley Liu

    Shirley is finder.com.au's publisher for banking and investments. She has completed a Masters in Commerce (Finance) and is the author of hundreds of articles. She is passionate about helping Aussies make an informed decision, save money and find the best deal for their needs.

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    ME Online Savings Account

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    3.05

    Standard Variable Rate

    1.30
    ING DIRECT Savings Maximiser

    Maximum Variable Rate

    3.00

    Standard Variable Rate

    1.60
    Bankwest Hero Saver

    Maximum Variable Rate

    2.65

    Standard Variable Rate

    0.01
    ANZ Progress Saver

    Maximum Variable Rate

    1.91

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