Money: Sign up now for SAYE contracts

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EMPLOYEES starting Save as You Earn contracts should sign before 31 March. A new series with lower bonuses will be introduced by banks, building societies and National Savings on 1 April.

The equivalent interest rate on five-year contracts drops from just under 7.5 per cent to about 5.53 per cent. The reduction for seven-year contracts is from 7.83 to just under 5.87 per cent.

The SAYE contract enables employees to save a lump sum by monthly contributions of between pounds 10 and pounds 250 for share option schemes.

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