Term deposit savers are being offered higher rates but the rises are more modest overall than what borrowers face. However there are standout offers from selected institutions across all terms

The news has been full of stories about interest rate rises on home loans. Not only are fixed rates rising, banks have also been raising floating rates.

At the same time, banks have been changing term deposit rates, although for shorter terms it is not always up.

The changes have not been as aggressive as for home loans, but they have been widespread.

A quick check of the interactive graphs at the bottom of this story shows that average bank rates are moving up faster for longer terms, but moving very little for shorter terms.

However, there are some notable exceptions and this story highlights them.

And some of the exceptions feature rates for terms that don't fit neatly into the graph options, and savers will want to identify them too.

Banks are adept at focusing 'specials' in places that makes them look unique and attractive. But they do need to be seen in a broader view.

And with it being Chinese New Year, banks have or will be bringing out 'specials' aimed around this seasonal event - you can identify those because the rates offered will end in an '8'.

Among banks, these are the term deposit rates that stand out at present:

- Heartland Bank's 3 month rate at 3.10%

- Kiwibank's 6 month rate at 3.75%

- SBS Bank's 9 month rate at 3.85%

- The Co-operative Bank's one year rate at 3.70%, their 18 month rate at 3.75%, and their 3.85% rate for two years.

- Both SBS Bank and TSB Bank offer 4% for a three year term.

- for four years, a number of banks are offering 4.10% including ANZ, the Co-operative Bank, ICBC and TSB Bank.

- for five years. both ANZ and ICBC are offering 4.20%.

Among investment grade rated finance companies, the rates from Liberty Finance also stand out.

Comparing the sharp market moves higher for home loans with the changes in term deposit offers, banks do seem to have some catching up to do for savers.

Don't forget to shop around and ask for better-than-carded rates. Negotiate. We often hear that +0.10% or +0.15% can be added at some banks if you press them. A lot however will depend on the size of your business and the term you are prepared to lock it up for.

For higher rates, you need to asses the offers of institutions with a lower credit rating. Rate offers rise significantly from non-bank institutions with sub-investment grade ("junk") credit ratings.

As we have earlier noted, savers may wish to think through the wisdom of locking up of funds for longer terms in what seems to be a turning rate environment. This situation should have savers thinking through the risk/reward scenarios.

Use our deposit calculator to figure exactly how much benefit each option is worth; you can assess the value of more or less frequent interest payment terms, and the PIE products, comparing two situations side by side.

All carded, or advertised, term deposit rates for all institutions for terms less than one year are here, and for terms one-to-five years are here.

Term PIE rates are here.

The latest headline rate offers are in this table.

for a $25,000 deposit Rating 3/4 mths 5/6/7 mths 8/9 mths 1 yr 18 mths 2 yrs 3 yrs
Main banks                
AA- 3.00 3.30 3.60 3.35 3.60 3.80 3.90
ASB AA- 3.00 3.65 3.35 3.20 3.50 3.65 3.80
AA- 3.00 3.15 3.68 3.25 3.60 3.75 3.80
Kiwibank A+ 3.00 3.75 3.20 3.65   3.40 3.60
Westpac AA- 3.00 3.50 3.25 3.40 3.20 3.70 3.50
Other banks                
BBB 2.95 3.40 3.50 3.70 3.75 3.85 3.95
Heartland Bank BBB 3.10 3.30 3.70 3.40 3.40 3.40 3.70
HSBC Premier AA- 2.50 2.80 2.90 2.90   2.90 2.95
ICBC A 3.05 3.35 3.65 3.45 3.65 3.75 3.85
RaboDirect A 2.85 3.40 3.35 3.40 3.40 3.45 3.80
RaboDirect BBB 2.75 3.55 3.85 3.60 3.70 3.80 4.00
A- 3.00 3.30 3.75 3.50 3.70 3.80 4.00
Selected fincos                
F&P Finance BB* 3.10 3.80 4.00 4.10 4.15 4.25 4.35
RaboDirect BBB 3.40 3.95 4.15 4.65 4.85 5.00 5.40
RaboDirect BBB 3.00 3.50 3.75 3.80 3.80 3.80 3.90
  * = the only credit rating in this review that is not investment grade.  

Rates in this table are the highest offered by each institution for the terms listed. You however will need to chech how often interest is credit or paid. That important factor is not filtered in the above table and rates with various interest payment/credit arrangements are mixed here. However our full tables do disclose the offer basis.

Our unique term deposit calculator can help quantify what each offer will net you.

Term deposit rates

Select chart tabs »
The '1 year %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The '30 days %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The '90 days %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The '6 months %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The '2 years %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The '3 years %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The '4 years %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)
The ' 5 years %' chart will be drawn here.
Loading...
(bank averages)

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment or click on the "Register" link below a comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current Comment policy is here.

10 Comments

If interest rates rise it will most likely be due to the old saying. It's not the return on money But the return of money that concerns.

With banks offering easy credit, return of capital in deposits is not assured.

Thanks Peri, I'm looking for something guaranteed and under 1yr terms - please tell me what is ?

Government bonds have the guarantee of the NZ government, that is as good as I can suggest.

Less than 1yr was my question Peri - there are none really

Your broker might be able to get his hands on NZ Government Bonds for you in the secondary market. The maturity date doesn't really matter as you can sell them back into the secondary market whenever you wish ( holding them for less than the year you are looking for) - at the prevailing market price, of course.

bw - but then I'm taking an undue interest rate risk in what I think is going to be an interest rate bear market for quite some time. Yes, the left over year of a longer-dated bond with a maturity date now less than 1yr would be fine, but try and find that. No, bank deposit are realistically the most riskless "investment" out there, but clearly not without a small degree of risk which every investment should have

Any way of finding a graph comparing term deposits vs inflation, i.e net interest over the years??

Some of the term deposit rates need to be looked at in depth, a number of banks now are offering longer terms, with interest paid at maturity. So what that means you are paying the banks every month to invest your money, as they will invest and receive monthly credits, at the maturity they will pay you at the initial rate, but you have missed out on the interest you should have received from monthly credits, some offer over 4% for 2 or3 years, it doesn't take a mathematician to work out you are loosing money.

Does anyone show which banks do that? eg Does interest.co.nz show which banks will compound it monthly? It seems most banks just pay it at the end of the term.