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Opening a fixed deposit savings account is one low risk way to keep your hard earned money safe and earn interest at the same time.
You can choose how long you want to deposit your funds, and then earn an interest rate based both on the amount you’re saving and the length of time you leave it with the bank. If you need to make an early withdrawal there will be a penalty to pay, which means this isn’t right for everyone.
This guide covers some of the best fixed deposit accounts available in Singapore, including the interest rates, minimum deposits, and range of tenures you can choose from.
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When you open a fixed deposit account - which may also be called a time deposit account - you agree to leave a chunk of your savings with a bank for a predetermined length of time.
The bank will then, in return, pay you an interest rate which is based on the amount you deposit, and how long they have access to your money.
Fixed deposit accounts are less risky than making investments in the stock market, but can produce a higher yield than simply leaving your money in a current account. Because you’re agreeing not to access your funds for what may be up to 3 years, you’ll often get a better rate compared to regular savings accounts, too.
All that said, fixed deposit accounts aren't for everyone. Locking away money means you can’t easily get it if you run into short term difficulties, and may sacrifice any interest earned.
As well as SGD fixed term accounts, many banks offer foreign currency fixed deposit options which let you save in a range of popular global currencies. These accounts have different interest rates which may prove more favourable than the SGD rate, depending on the global financial situation.
This guide takes a look at some of the best fixed deposit accounts in Singapore for 2021.
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Singapore Saving Bonds (SSB) are issued and guaranteed by the Singapore government. Like fixed deposit accounts, they’re also a low risk way to save. However, there are a few differences:
|Fixed deposit accounts
|Singapore Savings Bond
|Rates available fixed by bank or issuing institution
|Rates available fixed by government, based on the SSB yield in the past month
|Tenures available range from 1 week to 3 years
|10 year tenure at issuance
|Interest remains the same over the tenure
|Interest begins lower and then rises over time
|Minimum amounts vary - maximum amounts usually uncapped
|Save from SGD500 to SGD200,000
|Invest any amount over the minimum balance for the specific account
|Investments in multiples of SGD500 only
It’s important to note that the interest rates available at the time of writing aren’t particularly high at any institution.
That’s partly because of the global economic situation - during uncertain times, when demand for credit is lower, banks tend to correspondingly lower their fixed deposit rates. They don’t need to hold as much money to meet the levels of credit people are looking for, and there’s therefore no need to pay much of a premium to persuade people to hand over their savings.
However, all this changes over time, and the interest rates - as well as the promotions, features and fees - available on time deposit accounts may well improve. Keep an eye out for the best deals whenever you choose to invest.
Here are the main things to consider when choosing your fixed deposit account:
- What interest rates are available?
- How often is interest paid and how?
- What tenure options are there?
- What happens on maturity - can you reinvest on the same terms?
- What are the penalty rates if you need to access your money?
- Is the provider credible and do they have a reputation for good customer service?
Let’s take a look at some of the best options out there for fixed deposit accounts in Singapore. Read on for more details about the specific accounts, features and promotions.
|0.1% - 0.6% depending on value and tenure
|SGD10,000 for one month tenure SGD1,000 for 2 month+ tenure for retail clients
|1 month - 36 months for retail clients
|0.3% - 0.65% depending on value and tenure
|SGD500 for tenures of 3 to 36 months SGD10,000 for tenures of 1 to 2 months SDG100,000 for tenures of 1 week
|1 week - 36 months
|New customers - 0.5% - 0.75% for tenures up to 24 months Existing customers - 0.6% - 0.65%
|SGD5,000 for tenures of 1 to 2 months SGD1,000 for 2 month+ tenure
|1 month - 24 months
|Bank of China Singapore
|0.23% - 0.75% depending on value and tenure
|1 month - 36 months
|New customers - 0.15% - 0.6% for tenures up to 12 months Existing customers - 0.15% - 0.55%
|1 month - 12 months
|0.1% - 0.65% depending on value and tenure
|3 month - 36 month
|Standard Chartered singapore
|0.05% - 0.15% for new customers on a standard rate Promotional rate of up to 0.4% available at the time of writing
|SGD25,000 for promotional rate Minimum balance is not specified for new customers who are not part of the promotion
|1 month - 6 month
Maybank has a range of fixed deposit account options. You can open a Singapore dollar fixed term deposit with a tenure from 1 to 36 months¹, or choose a foreign currency deposit account.
For the SGD fixed term deposit accounts you can select a fixed or flexible tenure, with interest paid from 0.1% - 0.6%² based on the length of time your deposit is held for, and its value.
There’s also the option of a Privilege Plus Time Deposit which is available only to people aged 55+, who can benefit from higher interest rates.³
It’s worth noting that at the time of research there is no interest paid on most foreign currency fixed deposit account options. That said, foreign currency deposit accounts are available in 8 currencies - US, Australian, New Zealand and Canadian dollars, British pounds, euros, Japanese yen, and Swiss francs.
With Hong Leong you can choose from SGD fixed term deposits which run from just a week up to 36 months⁴.
There are a range of different interest rates, including promotions at the time of writing on deposits of 6 months, and on deposits of 13 months and above.
You may get a higher interest rate if your choice falls under a promotion, or other perks such as entry to prize draws or vouchers for a treat or experience.
There’s also a higher interest rate on offer for senior citizens of 55 years and above who can earn 0.125% more interest on deposits of 12 months or longer.
The standard CIMB fixed deposit account has a maximum term of 24 months⁵. You can also choose a shariah compliant fixed term deposit account or a foreign currency fixed deposit option.⁶
If you choose the SGD account your money will be reinvested after the agreed term unless you confirm you want to make a withdrawal⁷.
Foreign currency accounts require a minimum deposit of 10,000 currency units, and are available in 7 different currencies. At the time of writing there is a promotion on foreign currency deposit accounts in USD, GBP and AUD. The interest rate available on USD runs up to 0.35% while the rate on GBP and AUD is only 0.01%.
If you’re a Bank of China customer you can open a fixed term deposit in 10 different currencies⁸. For the SGD option, interest is fixed at the time of writing at 0.23% - 0.75% according to the amount you save and the tenure.⁹
Other currencies have different effective interest rates and minimum balance requirements.
However, the minimum amount required is somewhat lower than some of the other foreign currency fixed deposit accounts available in Singapore - you’ll only need USD or GBP2,000 to get started, for example.
If you want to open an AUD, NXD, CAD or EUR account you’ll have to save a minimum of 5,000 in the currency of your choice.
ICBC fixed deposit accounts can be opened in SGD, CNY or USD¹⁰. If you’re looking for a Singapore dollar account you can get started with ICBC for only SGD500 - although the interest rate for these small value savings are at the lower end of the scale compared to some of the others on the market. There are promotional offers at the time of writing which offer higher interest rates for people depositing fresh funds compared to existing customers.
You can open a CNY fixed deposit account with just CNY10,000 or a US dollar account with USD500.
You can open an RHB Singapore fixed deposit account online or using the mobile banking app. Tenures range from 3 to 36 months and the minimum balance you’ll need to save is only SGD1,000. ¹¹
You can also choose to open a foreign currency fixed term account in one of 9 currencies, with tenures ranging from one week to 24 months. You’ll need a minimum balance of SGD5,000 or the currency equivalent to get started. It’s also with noting that the rates on offer for many currencies are relatively low - check out the small print before you decide to lock your money away.¹²
Standard Chartered is not accepting new customer fixed term accounts of terms longer than 9 months at the time of writing¹³. You can open an account for up to 6 months under the regular terms and conditions - and there is a promotion at the time of research which allows you to open an 8 month tenure account to benefit from a better interest rate.¹⁴ ¹⁵
You can also open foreign currency deposit accounts in 9 currencies, with a maximum interest rate of **0.25%**¹⁶. You’ll need a minimum balance which is set by currency - USD, GBP and EUR accounts require 5,000 of the respective currency units to get started, for example.
A fixed deposit account may suit you if you’re looking to grow your savings but don’t want the risks involved with stock market investment. You’ll know upfront what the return will be on your money, and when you can access your funds again without penalty.
No matter which provider you choose, don’t forget to check out Wise as a smart way to manage your money across currencies, and save money while you send, spend and receive payments internationally.
- Maybank Singapore - SGD Time Deposit
- Maybank Singapore - Online Rates - Bank Rate Monitor
- Maybank Singapore - Time deposits
- Hong Leong Finance - Fixed Deposits
- CIMB Singapore - Fixed Deposit
- CIMB Singapore - Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit Account
- CIMB SG - SGD Fixed Deposit Account
- Bank of China Singapore - Time Deposit Account
- Bank of China Singapore - Time Deposit Board Rates (20210330) |
- ICBC Singapore - Fixed Deposits
- RHB Bank Singapore - Fixed deposit
- RHB Bank Singapore - Deposit rates
- Standard Chartered Singapore - Time Deposits
- Standard Chartered Singapore - Singapore Dollar Time Deposit
- Standard Chartered Singapore - SGD Time Deposit Interest Rates
- Standard Chartered Singapore - Foreign Currency Time Deposits
Sources checked on 21 April 2021
This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.
We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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