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16 September 2020 16:33

Martin Lewis Saving MoneySavingExpert.com

However, with the launch of the Skipton product, it appears competition is increasing. The new Online Bonus Saver will allow customers to open from £1, which is well-suited to those embarking upon a savings journey, perhaps even for the first time. And with savings permitted up to £1million, this is likely to provide a suitable option for many savers across the country. The account is available to UK residents who are aged 16 or over. READ MORE: Backto60: What next for 1950s women in the state pension age debate?

The NS&I Income Bond has been pipped to the top of the best buy easy access savings table – the first time in months. NS&I's Income Bond paid a market-leading 1.16% AER (1.15% gross), offering savers a glimmer of hope as other providers cut and pulled their rates as the coronavirus pandemic unravelled. But in the past few weeks, savings rates have been climbing steadily and now, for the first time in three months, the NS&I Income Bond – an easy access product – has been knocked off the top spot. Skipton Building Society has launched its Online Bonus Saver (issue 7), paying 1.20% AER/gross – a comfortable lead on NS&I's offering. However, savers should note that the rate includes a 0.50% bonus for 12 months so it's best to diarise to compare deals ahead of this date. The account can be opened with a minimum £1, a more affordable amount than the minimum £500 needed to open NS&I's Income Bond. The Skipton account allows unlimited further additions and withdrawals can be made at any time. One possible drawback is that it can only be opened and managed online. Interest is paid on the anniversary of the account being opened. Does this signal the start of further easy access rate rises? Data site Moneyfacts said while other savings providers could follow Skipton's lead to launch chart-topping rates or increase rates on offer, it's not guaranteed, particularly in light of the current pandemic. As such, savers need to act quickly to secure the top deals as they're released, to avoid missing out on short-lived, best buy deals. See YourMoney.com's The savings accounts paying the most interest for a monthly updated list of top rates available.