Cash ISA savers look away now: stocks and shares boasts 8.9% return

Best buy cash ISAs don't even pay a quarter of that

ISA (Individual Savings Account) on gold coins with white backgr

Paltry savings rates are nothing new, but the massive gulf between cash and stocks and shares has been laid bare by a new piece of data.

Fidelity Personal Investing found that someone who invested in the FTSE All Share Index one year ago would have achieved a stonking 8.85% return.

Contrast this with cash ISAs, where even the best buy, one-year products pay less than 2%. And that's assuming you have a top paying ISA – as Fidelity points out, the average savings account pays just 0.16%.

Compare cash ISAs

A practical example

Assuming you had the funds to use your full £15,000 'new ISA' (NISA) allowance last year, you would have earned more than £1,300 going the aforementioned investment route, but just £24 from the average savings account.

"While investing in the stock market should ultimately be a long-term investment, the difference between leaving your money in cash and putting it to work in stocks and shares is worth noting," Fidelity says.

Do what's right for you

Of course, the key advantage cash holds over stocks and shares is risk. An investment could just as easily go down as up (especially in the short term), whereas cash returns are guaranteed and your initial stake is protected (provided you stay within the FSCS limits).

What's more, with the consumer prices index sitting at just 0.1%, your savings are comfortably outstripping inflation for the time being – and if they aren't, you really need to switch accounts straight away.

Individual Savings Accounts or Isas Explained

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