Press Release

For immediate release

Information verified correct on December 6th, 2016

Savers for the win: How to maximise savings in a low rate world

  • 11 lenders lift term deposit rates by as much as 0.85 percentage points
  • How much extra interest you can earn over 12 and 36 months
  • How to boost your savings with a term deposit account

5 August, 2016, Sydney, Australia – Despite the Reserve Bank's latest cash rate cut to a new historic low of 1.5% on Tuesday (02/08/16), the tide seems to finally be turning for savers across the country with news that 11 lenders are lifting term deposit rates, by as much as 0.85 percentage points, analysis by Australia’s most visited comparison site1finder.com.au reveals.

The big four banks are leading the charge, announcing increases to their term deposit rates which will see them exceed the market average 12 month and 36 month term deposit rates of 2.48% and 2.64%, respectively.

ANZ, Commonwealth Bank and Westpac have come to the party, each announcing new increased annual rates of 3.00% for 12 month term deposits, up by 0.52 percentage points. Additionally, Commonwealth Bank and Westpac have announced an updated 36 month term deposit rate of 3.20%, an uplift of 0.56 percentage points. ANZ has also announced a 24 month term deposit rate of 3.20%, which is an increase of 0.75 percentage points.

NAB, meanwhile, has announced a new 8 month term deposit rate of 2.90%, an increase of 0.85 percentage points. 

Other lenders that have announced increases to term deposit rates include Newcastle Permanent Building Society which will pass on 0.50 percentage points for its 12 month term deposit and Bank of Melbourne which will offer a 0.55 percentage point increase for its 12 month term deposit account.

Changes to term deposit accounts

Financial InstitutionProductPrevious rateNew ratePercentage point changeDate effective
Commbank12 Month Term Deposit $50,000-$1,999,9992.45%3.00%0.55%19 August
Commbank24 Month Term Deposit2.60%3.10%0.50%19 August
Commbank36 Month Term Deposit2.70%3.20%0.50%19 August
NAB8 Month Term Deposit2.05%2.90%0.85%8 August
ANZ12 Month Advance Notice Term Deposit2.40%3.00%0.60%5 August
ANZ24 Month Advance Notice Term Deposit2.45%3.20%0.75%5 August
Westpac12 Month Term Deposit2.45%3.00%0.55%8 August
St.George12 Month Term Deposit2.45%3.00%0.55%8 August
BankSA12 Month Term Deposit2.45%3.00%0.55%8 August
Bank of Melbourne12 Month Term Deposit2.45%3.00%0.55%8 August
Bankwest36 Month Term Deposit2.90%3.00%0.10%9 August
Bankwest12 month Term Deposit2.85%3.00%0.15%9 August
Bank of Queensland12 Month Term Deposit2.75%3.05%0.30%9 August
Bank of Queensland24 Month Term Deposit2.60%3.15%0.55%9 August
Bank of Queensland36 Month Term Deposit2.65%3.25%0.60%8 August
Bank of Sydney3 month Term Deposit ($1000-$9,999)1.85%1.60%-0.25%4 August
Bank of Sydney3 Month Term Deposit ($50,000-$99,999)2.35%2.10%-0.25%4 August
Bank of Sydney12 Month Term Deposit ($1000-$9,999)2.05%1.80%-0.25%4 August
Bank of Sydney12 Month Term Deposit ($50,000-$99,999)2.65%2.40%-0.25%4 August
Newcastle Permanent Building Society12 Month Term Deposit2.00%2.50%0.50%8 August
IMB48 Month (4 Year) Term Deposit ($5,000 -$24,999.99)2.90%2.80%-0.10%5 August
IMB60 Month (5 Year) Term Deposit ($5,000 -$24,999.99)3.10%3.00%-0.10%5 August
Westpac12 Month Term Deposit2.45%3.00%0.55%8 August
Westpac24 Month Term Deposit2.65%3.10%0.45%8 August
Westpac36 Month Term Deposit2.65%3.20%0.55%8 August

source: finder.com.au

Bessie Hassan, Money Expert at finder.com.au, says banks may be lifting term deposit rates to preserve their competitive ability to raise deposits and to ensure they have capacity to cope with any future political or economic shocks.

“Financial institutions need a sufficient ratio of money borrowed and cash deposits to protect themselves if their loan books go sour. For example, any disruption in the property market or overseas economies could hurt their bottom line,” she says.

Ms Hassan says banks are curbing the trend by lifting term deposit rates, so there’s opportunity for Australians to pocket greater savings in the form of interest earned on funds.

“This is a fantastic move by the banks and the benefit will be felt by Australian households, and in particular self-funded retirees and those who rely heavily on savings for income.

“If you’re prepared to lock in your funds at a competitive rate, you can grow your savings balance significantly. 

“Given the average increase of 0.52 percentage points issued by the Big Four banks for a 12-month term deposit of 3.00% on $100,000, savers could earn an additional $520 over the course of a year,” she says.

For those who lock in a 36 month term deposit at the new average rate of 3.20%, this could result in an additional $1,779, while those with a smaller deposit of $25,000 would still reap an extra $445 over 36 months if they lock in the new rate. 

Ms Hassan says term deposit accounts can be useful for savers with a large amount of funds saved, as they allow you to lock away your funds for a guaranteed return.

“As your money is locked away, you typically get a higher interest rate on a term deposit account compared to a regular savings account. If you have a large amount of money tucked away in a term deposit account, you can benefit from accrued interest over time.”

Account holders are warned to keep an eye out for rate changes, and to take note of the rate change size and the date in which it becomes effective.

“With more rate changes yet to be announced, do some research to see which banks are raising, or dropping, term deposit rates so you can make an informed decision,” Ms Hassan says.

As at the end of July, the average interest rate for all variable savings accounts was 2.66% however this rate may lower if banks pass on rate cuts for savings accounts, so there’s incentive for Australians to consider a term deposit account with a higher rate.

Term deposits: how much extra you can earn

Deposit amount12 months at 2.48% interest12 months at 3.00% interestDifference36 months at 2.64% interest36 months at 3.20% interestDifference
$10,000$248$300$52$813$991$178
$25,000$620$750$130$2033$2478$445
$50,000$1240$1500$260$4065$4955$890
$100,000$2480$3000$520$8131$9910$1779
$200,000$4960$6000$1040$16262$19821$3559

source: finder.com.au, interest compounded annually.

Term deposits can be a safe investment for savers who are looking to maximise their interest, but keep in mind that if you need to access your funds before the term expires, you may need to pay a fee. 

Compare term deposit accounts online to secure a favourable rate.

1  Average 1.7M visitors monthly, Experian Hitwise since 2015

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Disclaimer

The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on finder.com.au's review pages for the current correct values.

About finder.com.au:

finder.com.au is one of Australia’s biggest comparison websites and has helped over 4.8 million Australians find better credit cards, home loans, life insurance, shopping deals and more since 2006. finder.com.au compares 250 credit and debit cards from 31 providers, over 300 home loan products, and information from 13 life insurance providers as well as online shopping promo codes, mobile phone plans, travel insurance and more. One Australian every five minutes is using finder.com.au or creditcardfinder.com.au to find better (Source: Google Analytics).

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