Smaller banking brands offering bigger returns on easy access accounts

Savers searching for accounts where they can get their hands on their money quickly if needed may find bigger returns with smaller brands, research has found.

Newer “challenger” banks and building societies top the tables for the best easy access account rates, found.

Virgin Money, Kent Reliance, Marcus by Goldman Sachs, Yorkshire Building Society, Tesco Bank, Sainsbury’s Bank and Ford Money are among the providers paying top rates, based on someone having £10,000 to put away.

It said, for example, that someone could get a 1.5% rate with Virgin Money – 10 times a 0.15% rate on a “flexible saver” account from high street giant HSBC.

Rachel Springall, a finance expert at, said: “Clearly convenience costs, so savers will need to rethink where they are storing their hard-earned cash.

“Some of the best deals on the market come from building societies or the more unfamiliar challenger banks, with the latter taking firm hold of the best buy tables, perhaps to remain consistently in the view of savers to draw in deposits for their future lending.”

Ms Springall continued: “Savers who are preparing to switch must keep in mind that many of the top deals might not be around for long and may well require internet access, as many can only be opened online.

“For example, ICICI Bank UK launched an online-only rate of 1.54% in January, but it remained on the market for less than a month – so speed is vital to secure some of the best rates seen this year.”

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