The savings market has been a pretty dreary place for more than three years now, with ultra low rates and stubborn inflation responsible for much of the gloom.
Improvements for consumers in terms of better rates and a respite from inflationary pressures still look some way off, so maybe that’s why some of the banks and building societies are starting to recognise the need to reinvigorate the savings culture and get it back on the agenda.
First out of the blocks was Halifax launching its Savers Prize Draw back on 3rd October giving the bank a minimum of 12 huge media opportunities with each of its planned monthly draws, kicking off with the first one next month (a nice pre Xmas bonus for the first batch of 1103 names out of the hat!)
Overall the promotion will see 13236 lucky winners over the next year taking a slice of the £6 million prize fund and no doubt spreading the news of their good luck far and wide.
Not to be outdone by a major high street rival, Santander came to the table last week with an equally unique marketing stunt, promising to pay 3 years worth of savings interest upfront to those with a minimum of £10,000 and who have or are willing to open a Santander current account.
The interest rate on offer of 3.36% AER falls short of the best buy offerings from Yorkshire Bank 4.30% and Post Office at 4.21%, but I’m sure there will be no shortage of takers for a sizeable lump sum interest payment up front.
Whilst it’s no doubt a part of a much bigger current account recruitment jigsaw, and takes its place next to the recent £300/£200/£100 switching incentive, I take my hat off to Santander for doing its bit to breathe some much needed life back into our lacklustre savings market.
My verdict – HIT 7.5/10