Why are savings accounts so complicated nowadays

  robgf 00:14 01 Apr 2010

I was watching a report on ISAs on TV and how interest rates are being sneakily cut.
So I thought I had better check on mine (I don't normally pay much attention to my savings).
I was surprised to find that my Nationwide cash ISA only pays 0.25%. And even worse, my Investdirect account, where I keep a fair proportion of my savings is down to 0.16%!!!!!!!

I'm not that bothered by the ISA, as it only has a few thousand in it. But the Investdirect needs changing and Nationwide don't seem to do anything with a decent interest rate (so much for the no share holders to pay theory).

So I have been looking around for an instant access account, with an ATM card. But all the accounts seem to have catches. I was looking at the Halifax Guaranteed Saver Reward, which pays 1.5%, but finally noticed that it reverts to the Halifax Guaranteed Saver after one year and the rate drops to 0.5%.
What's with all the sneaky and IMOP underhand tactics.

Whatever happened to simple easy access accounts, where you stick your money in and they pay you a reasonable steady rate for the next ten years.

  jakimo 00:49 01 Apr 2010

I'm I glad I transfered in 2008 to the Halifax 4% 3yr fix term cash ISA,

Ordinary High St.bank accounts are not worth looking at as interest rates are rubbish,when taking inflation into account you will actually lose money

  BT 08:41 01 Apr 2010

What annoys me is the way the banks introduce a new ISA each year with an 'Introductory' extra 1% or so for the first year.. This is OK but if you already have an ISA its a dilemma whether to start a new one or top up the old one. The problem is you can end up with a number of separate ones on which the Interest rate slowly declines if you don't keep an eye on them.

The ideal thing is if you can top up an existing ISA each year if the interest rate stays OK as the capital will then build up faster as the interest is paid in.

  Quickbeam 08:44 01 Apr 2010

"What happened was the base rate was cut to 0.5%."
At which point the mind set of the saver changed to spend it of shoebox it, it's not worth the bother of saving in a bank.

  sunnystaines 09:35 01 Apr 2010

they are more complex to mask the poor rates.

unless you go for a 3 year deal the rates are dreadful, but will the govt keep rates low or will they take off if inflation takes off its a gamble no one knows, we are thinking of 3 year isa but will check the penalties for pulling out if rates make be rises during the 3 years.

  ronalddonald 12:22 01 Apr 2010

and rip off times from the Banks. I thought you could find proper time compounding accounts sadly you cant.

  anniesboy 15:32 01 Apr 2010

Nationwide e ISA pays 2.75%
4year ISA 4.25%

  michaelw 15:50 01 Apr 2010

I look at the money charts in papers and my AA internet pays around 2.8%. You don't get a card though.

  john 52 16:11 01 Apr 2010

Nationwide Champion ISA 2.80 % with one withdrawal A year

Santander Flexible ISA Pays 2.70% above the Bank of England base rate for 12 months.

Flexible access - access your Flexible ISA online, at a cash machine, by branch or over the phone.
Guaranteed minimum rate - of 3.20% AER tax free (variable) for 12 months.

  oresome 16:56 01 Apr 2010

One problem with some of the higher paying ISAs is that they won't allow transfers in.

Not much use if your existing ISA has a poor rate.

Basically the banks need to repair and improve their balance sheets. Now they could stop paying huge bonuses, alternatively take Joe Public for a ride. Hmm.

  kidsis 14:43 02 Apr 2010

anyone thinking of going in to a bank to change an account (or open one) be warned - you virtually have to take your dna profile with you. At the very least they will require 2 utility bills, probably also passport. also see if you can make an appointment beforehand - twice recently we have had to wait 30-45 minutes before seeing a "customer adviser" (the queue for the counter staff at least moved). a friend said that while she was waiting to see an adviser, others were coming in to the bank and being seen before her: she is convinced that this is because of her age (pensioner), and that if she had been younger this wouldn't have happened.

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