Savers gain as rates creep up

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The Independent Online
Despite a nervous flurry among mortgage lenders in the wake of the recent base rate rise, the cost of home borrowing has not followed suit so far.

However, savings rates have continued to edge up slightly. While this is only a pale reflection of last month's mortgage rate rise, it will none the less be welcome for many savers.

The Bradford & Bingley building society is increasing by up to 0.5 per cent the rate it pays on branch-based savings accounts. For example, the society's tax-free Tessa Classic II account will earn 6.25 per cent - up from a rather mean 5.75 per cent that had been on offer. Its Feeder and High Return Tessa accounts will now pay 6.95 per cent, up by 0.2 per cent.

Chelsea Building Society is also raising rates on its savings accounts, by between 0.15 and 0.45 per cent.

The Option 90 account, which offers free access to investments on three months' notice, moves to 5.05 per cent gross on sums above £10,000 - an increase of 0.35 per cent.

For savers prepared to tie up their money for a year, Royal Bank of Scotland has launched a one-year Guaranteed Income Account which pays 7.5 per cent gross on sums above £50,000. On amounts up to £25,000, the rate falls to 7 per cent gross - or 6.75 per cent if the income is taken monthly.

Norwich and Peterborough is paying what it claims to be the highest amount now available on instant-access postal accounts. Its Postmaster account pays 5.4 per cent gross on amounts up to £10,000.

Rates for guaranteed income bonds, which pay income net of tax at the basic rate, have fallen back since November. But this month's base rate rise should eventually filter through.

Elsewhere, Gan Life & Pensions, based in Harlow, is offering 6.7 per cent net over five years on investments above £50,000.

On fixed mortgages, the Hinckley & Rugby Building Society has one of the best short-term offers, charging borrowers 1.5 per cent until November 1995. The National Counties Building Society will charge 2.99 per cent until January 1996.

For those who want to fix their rates over 10 years, TSB charges 9.45 per cent until October 2004. A free valuation is also on offer.

Northern Rock, the first to raise its rates after the pre-Christmas base rate rise, is now offering mortgages at 8.74 per cent, fixed until April 2000, on advances up to 90 per cent of a home's value.

Intriguingly, the building society's offer includes not only a free valuation but also a pledge not to levy a mortgage indemnity guarantee, which often can cost the borrower up to £1,000 on an average £60,000 loan.

Those seeking discounts can choose between the Scarborough Building Society, which is cutting its 8.45 per cent variable rate to 1.5per cent for 12 months, and Bank of Ireland, whose variable-rate discount will leave borrowers paying 2.89 per cent less until April 1997.

BEST DEPOSIT RATES

INSTANT ACCESS Telephone Account Notice Deposit Rate Interest

or term % interval

Skipton BS 01756 700511 3 High Street Instant £2,000 6.10 Year

Yorkshire BS 0800 378838 First Class Access Postal £1,000 6.20 Year

Britannia BS 01538 391741 Capital Trust Postal £10,000 6.50 Year

£25,000 6.75 Year

NOTICE ACCOUNTS

Nottingham BS 0602 481444 Autumn Bonus 30 Day £2,500 5.75 Year

City & Metropolitan 081464 0814 Super 60 60 Day £500 6.30 Year

Bristol & West (Asset) BS 0800 303330 Asset 90 90 Day (P) £10,000 7.00 Year

£25,000 7.10 Year

TERM ACCOUNTS

Woolwich BS 0800 400900 One yr fxd rate bond 1 year £500 7.50 fixed Year

Halifax BS 01422 333333 Guaranteed Reserve 1 year £10,000 7.50 fixed Year

Halifax BS 01422 333333 Guaranteed Reserve 2 year £10,000 8.25 fixed Year

Halifax BS 01422 333333 Guaranteed Reserve 3 year £10,000 8.60 fixed Year

MONTHLY INTEREST

Birmingham Midshires BS 0902 710710 First Class Postal £1,000 4.65 Month

Britannia BS 01538 391741 Capital Trust Postal £2,000 5.84 Month

£10,000 6.31 Month

£25,000 6.55 Month

TESSAS (tax-exempt special savings accounts)

Manchester BS 0161 832 0101 5 Year £8,400 8.00 fixed Year

Hinckley & Rugby BS 01455 251234 5 Year £3,000 7.65 Year

Market Harborough BS 0858 463244 5 Year £9,000 7.60 Year

Barclays Bank 0800 400100 5 Year £1,000 7.50 Year

HIGH-INTEREST CHEQUE ACCOUNTS

Woolwich BS 0800 400900 Current Instant £500 3.85 Year

Halifax BS 01422 333333 Asset Reserve Instant £5,000 5.00 Year

Chelsea BS 0800 717515 Classic Postal Instant £2,500 6.00 Year

£25,000 6.50 Year

OFFSHORE (gross)

Portman Channel Islands 01481 822747 Instant Gold Instant £5,000 6.20 Year

Derbyshire IOM 01624 663432 Instant Access Instant £10,000 6.30 Year

Derbyshire IOM 01624 663432 90 Day 90 Day £10,000 6.75 Year

Halifax JSY 01534 59840 Guaranteed Reserve 1 Year £50,000 7.70 fixed Year

NATIONAL SAVINGS

Accounts & bonds (gross) Notice or term Deposit Rate % Interest interval

INVESTMENT ACCOUNTS 1 Month £20 5.25 Year

£500 5.75 Year

£25,000 6.00 Year

INCOME BONDS 3 Month £2,000 6.50 Month

£25,000 6.75 Month

CAPITAL BONDS (Series I) 5 Year £100 7.75 fixed Maturity

FIRST OPTION BONDS 12 Month £1,000 6.40 fixed Year

£20,000 6.80 fixed Year

PENSIONER'S GUARANTEED INCOME BOND (Series 2)

5 Year £500 7.50% fixed Month

NS Certificates (tax free)

42nd ISSUE 5 Year £100 5.85 fixed Maturity

8th INDEX-LINKED 5 Year £100 3.00+RPI Maturity

CHILDRENS BOND (Issue G) 5 Year £25 7.85 fixed Maturity

P= by post only. All rates are shown gross and are subject to change without notice.

Source: Chase de Vere Investments PLC - 0171 404 5766. Compiled on 9 February 1995

BEST BORROWING RATES

MORTGAGES

Fixed rates Telephone Rate/period Max Fee Incentive

% advance % £

Hinkley & Rugby BS 01455 251234 1.50 to 1/11/95 60 £195 -

National Counties BS 01372 742211 2.99 to 1/1/96 90 £100 £100 cashback

Citibank 0181 846 8363 6.45 to 1/3/97 85 £250 -

Leeds & Holbeck BS 01532 459511 7.99 to 1/4/98 75 £145 -

Northern Rock BS 0800 591500 8.74 to 15/4/00 90 £250 No MIG, free valuation

TSB Local branch 9.49 to 31/10/04 95 £250 Free valuation

Variable rates

Scarborough BS 0800 590547 1.95 for 12 months 95 - Free valuation

Northern Rock BS 0800 591500 2.49 to 1/3/96 90 £250 £400 cashback

Bank of Ireland 01734 510100 5.55 to 1/4/97 90 £260 2yrs free ASU - FTB

Stroud & Swindon BS 01225 427764 6.50 to 31/1/98 75 - -

PERSONAL LOANS

Unsecured Telephone APR Fixed monthly payments on £3,000 for 3 years

% With insurance Without insurance

Midland Bank Local branch 15.40 £116.54 £103.14

Abbey National Local branch 15.90 £115.81 £103.77

Clydesdale Bank 0141 248 7070 16.20 £113.94 £103.33

Secured Max advance % Max term

Royal Bank of Scotland 0131 556 8555 10.90 70 3 years to retirement

Midland Bank Local branch 11.30 90 5 to 30 years

First Direct 0800 222000 12.00 80 Up to 40 years

TYPICAL OVERDRAFTS

Telephone Authorised Unauthorised

EAR % EAR %

Barclays Bank Local Branch 19.20 29.80

Lloyds Bank Local Branch 19.40 26.80

National Westminster Bank Local Branch 18. 90 33.25

BEST OVERDRAFTS

Telephone Authorised Unauthorised

EAR % EAR %

Woolwich 0800 400900 9.50 29.50

Alliance & Leicester BS 0500 959595 9.50 29.80

Abbey National 0800 555100 9.90 29.50

CREDIT CARDS

Telephone Card name Minimum Rate APR Annual

income pm % % fee

Standard

Robert Fleming (S&P) 0800 282101 Mastercard/Visa - 1.00 14.60 £12

Royal Bank of Scotland 0131 556 8555 Mastercard - 1.25 16.00 -

MBNA International 0800 062620 Mastercard/Visa - 1.45 18.90 -

Gold cards

Lloyds Bank Local branch Mastercard £20,000 1.00 14.50 £40

Midland Bank Local branch Mastercard £20,000 1.30 18.10 £35

MBNA International 0800 062620 Mastercard/Visa £20,000 1.38 17.90 -

STORE CARDS

Payment by direct debit Other methods

Telephone pm APR pm APR

John Lewis Local store - - 1.39 18.00

Marks and Spencer 01244 681681 1.70 22.40 1.84 24.40

Timecard 01132 471471 1.70 22.40 1.87 24.90

APR=Annualised percentage rate. EAR=effective annual rate. All rates are subject to change without notice.

Source: London & Country. Freephone 0800 373300 Compiled on 9 February 1995

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