Standard Chartered Bank currently has a very popular fixed deposit promotion, the SCB Step-Up Time Deposit.
The other day, I was at one of SCB branches and the place was full of people!
There were many people waiting to open a Step-Up account with a waiting time of almost 3 hours.
To be eligible for the offer, you need at least $25k of fresh funds, subject to a maximum of $1 million.
How the account works is that the interest rate you receive will increase every 3 months.
This works out to an average interest rate of around 1.55% p.a.
There is a flexibility of withdrawing your funds every 3 months without penalty. There is attractive because if interest rates were to go up and there is a better offer out there, you can simply switch your funds to the new offer.
If interest rates stay at the current levels, you can leave your money in the account to enjoy increasing interest rates without doing anything.
There is a penalty of $250 is the money is withdrawn within the first 3 months.
For those who do not want to queue so long, UOB currently has a fixed deposit promotion of 1.25% p.a. for 15 months (minimum $20k). This offer is not too bad compared to the SCB Step-Up account if interest rates were to go up in a year’s time.
Of course, if rates stay at current levels, then the Standard Chartered Bank Step-Up deposit will be clearly superior.