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Interest rate hikes: Bad news for mortgage holders, good news for savers

Australia cash note and coin savings sprawled on table to signify interest rate rises.
Savings account interest rates will also increase by 0.5 per cent. (Source: Getty)

While the Big Four banks' decision to pass on the Reserve Bank's latest interest rate hike might spell bad news for mortgage holders, it's welcome news for savers.

All four major banks have passed on the 0.5 per cent hike in full to home loans, but they are also increasing the interest rates for savings accounts.

NAB is increasing its Reward Saver account by 0.50 percentage points, taking the maximum rate to 1 per cent.

CBA is offering the highest interest rate of the Big Four, having increased the max rate for its GoalSaver account from 0.75 per cent to 1.25 per cent from July 15.

ANZ has hiked its max rate from 0.65 to 1.15 per cent, while Macquarie Bank's flagship transaction account will offer a rate of 1.75 per cent for balances up to $250,000 – both effective from Sunday, July 17.

Westpac, Macquarie Bank and Bankwest have also boosted their savings account rates by 0.5 per cent, with the banks offering customers a new max rate of 1.35 per cent, 1.75 per cent and 1.35 per cent, respectively.

Suncorp is offering the highest interest on their Growth Saver account, increasing the interest rate by 0.7 per cent to 2 per cent for savers.

Here's a full breakdown of the top 10 saving account interest rates by bank.

Bank account

Change to max rate

New max rate

Effective date

CBA GoalSaver



15 July

Westpac Life



20 July

NAB Reward Saver



15 July

ANZ Progress Saver



17 July

Macquarie Bank Transaction Account



17 July

Suncorp Bank Growth Saver



17 July

Bankwest Easy Saver



15 July

BOQ SmartSaver



15 July

Virgin Money, ME Bank & BOQ reward savers

Meanwhile, Virgin Money, ME Bank and Bank of Queensland (BOQ) also announced new savings rates to rival competitors, effective from July 15.

Virgin Money has increased its rates on its Boost Saver account by 0.8 per cent to 2.3 per cent, while its Grow Saver account will increase by 0.5 per cent to 1.5 per cent annually.

ME Bank will also increase rates on its Online Savings account by 0.50 per cent to 1.60 per cent, with competitive rates on term deposits, such as 3 per cent on a 12-month term deposit.

To support saving customers, BOQ will introduce a 3 per cent rate on their Future Saver account for balances up to $50,000 and 1 per cent for savings between $50,001 and $250,000.

BOQ SmartSaver account holders can also save at 2 per cent interest on balances between $1 and $250,000.

Researchers suggest borrowers shop around research director Sally Tindall said NAB had “followed its big bank competitors” by hiking mortgage rates by the full 0.50 percentage points.

“Variable rate customers are now seeing their third month in a row of big rate rises," Tindall said.

"These relentless repayment increases could start to cause significant stress on some household budgets."

Tindall suggested borrowers “carefully check their own rate” against what their bank is offering new business to ensure they aren’t being slapped with a loyalty tax.

“The banks have so far put decent rate hikes on the table for some of their savers," she said.

"Just remember, banks are being selective about which accounts they hike, so take time to review your savings rate regularly as the RBA hikes continue.

“People looking for a competitive term deposit rate should know there are higher rates out there than the specials put on the table by CBA, NAB and ANZ.”

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