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Best fixed deposit rates in South Africa 2021 (Updated)


Thinking of locking your money for some time? A fixed deposit account can be a viable option to consider.

A Fixed Deposit Account is an account that yields interest on the principal amount invested through an agreement with a financial institution to save the principal amount for a specified period.

The principal investment is withdrawn at the end of the fixed period (term) as agreed at the time of deposit and at that stage it would’ve earned interest. Interest can be withdrawn at a predetermined period be it monthly, quarterly, bi-annually, or yearly. Interest not withdrawn is capitalised monthly.

There are different types of fixed deposit accounts that one can invest in South Africa. To get the best out of a fixed deposit investment, you have to pen down clear goals before locking your money into a fixed deposit account. By doing so, you are able to select a fixed deposit account that is best suited for your investment goals.

Things that you need to consider when opening a fixed deposit account include the period that you are willing to invest your money and the interest rate range that you desire to earn. You will need to choose a fixed deposit account that you want to lock your money in. Fixed deposit accounts include but are not limited to:

  • Notice Accounts,
  • Fixed deposit accounts,
  • Tax free savings accounts, and
  • Demand savings accounts

In this article, we discuss the best-fixed deposit rates that are available in South Africa. Since time is a factor when opening a fixed deposit account, we list the highest interest rates on fixed deposit accounts for the periods: 3 months, 6 months, 12 months, 24 months, and 60 months.

For each period, we list the best three fixed deposit rates that are available in South Africa as of 2021.

Overall Best Fixed Deposits Rates for 2021

RankingInstitutionEffective Rate %
1Nedbank10.60
2Standard Bank10.55%
3African Bank10.50%
4Capitec Bank8.84%
5Discovery Bank8.71%

Nedbank has the best-fixed deposit rate for 2021 offering a 10.60% interest rate, followed by Standard Bank with 10.55% with African Bank coming in third with a 10.50% effective interest rate for 60 months investment.

Best 60 months fixed deposit rates 2021

RankBankMinimum Deposit Effective Interest Rate %Nominal Interest Rate %
1NedbankR1,000,000.00+10.60%8.9%
2Standard BankR1,000.0010.55%8.8%
3African BankR500.0010.50%8.8%

1. Nedbank

Nedbank comes first with a nominal interest rate of 8.89% for the 60 months fixed deposit investment. The effective interest is calculated at 10.60%. To earn 10.60% interest on investment, one needs to hold their money for a period of 60 months. The minimum investment required to earn 10.60% on investment is R1,000,000.00.

2. Standard Bank

Standard bank offers a number of fixed deposit accounts to individuals in South Africa with competitive interest rates. The bank’s 60 months fixed deposit account requires a minimum amount of R1,000.00 to be deposited into the Fixed Deposit Investment Account.

For the 60 months fixed deposit account, investors earn a 10.55% effective interest rate on their investment. The nominal interest rate is 8.80% per annum. Money on the Standard Bank Fixed deposit Investment Account is available at maturity.

3. African Bank

African Bank offers fixed deposit accounts of which are available to anyone above the age of 18. The bank has offers the highest interest rate on its 60 fixed deposit account. A fixed deposit account for a 60 months investment yields a 10.50% effective interest rate with a minimum investment of just R500.00.

The 8.80% effective interest rate puts the African Bank 60 months fixed deposit account at number 3 nationwide.

Best 48 Months Fixed Deposit Rates 2021

RankBankMinimum DepositEffective Interest Rate %Nominal Rate %
1NedbankR5,000.007.50%7.25%
2Capitec BankR100,000.007.23%7.00%
3First National BankR1,000,000.006.91%6.70%

1. Nedbank

Nedbank offers up to 7,25% in nominal interest rate for 48 months fixed deposit account. The amount of interest that Nedbank offers is mainly dependent on the amount of investment that a client wants to deposit. The minimum deposit for a 48 months fixed deposit account is R5,000.00.

2. Capitec Bank

Capitec bank comes in at number three for the best 48 months fixed deposit rate offering a 7.23% effective interest rate. The nominal rate of interest for the account is 48 months fixed deposit is 7.00%. However, the account is for investors who deposit R100,000.00 or more into their fixed deposit account.

3. First National Bank

First National Bank offers a 6.91% effective interest rate on their 48 months fixed deposit account. The nominal interest rate for the 48 months fixed deposit account is 6.40%. To qualify for the nominal rate of 6.40%, clients need to invest a minimum amount of R1,000,000.00.

Best 36 Months Fixed Deposit Rates 2021

RankBankMinimum DepositEffective Interest Rate %Nominal Interest Rate %
1African BankR500.007.67%7.15%
2Discovery BankR10,000.007.1%6.45%
3Capitec BankR100,000.006.54%6.35%

1. African Bank

African bank offer 7.67% annual interest rate for their 36 months fixed deposit account. The account’s semi-annual interest rate is 7.03%.

2. Discovery Bank

Discovery bank offers the second-best nominal interest for 36 months fixed deposit account with a 6.45% nominal interest rate. The account has an effective interest rate of 7.64% with interest claimed at maturity. The minimum deposit for this account is R10,000.00.

3. Capitel Bank

With a minimum investment of R100,000.00, clients receive a nominal interest rate of up to 6.35%. The effective interest rate for such investment is 6.54%.

Best 24 months fixed deposit rates

RateBankMinimum DepositEffective Interest Rate %Nominal Interest Rate %
1African BankR500.006.93%6.70%
2Discovery BankR10,000.006.58%6.20%
3Capitec BankR100,000.006.43%6.25%

1. African Bank

Banks are offering higher fixed deposit rates to attract high-quality investors; this trend produces competitive rates in the market, which is an advantage to you as an investor.

African Bank took this as an opportunity to re-capitalize after its collapse and being put under curatorship in 2014. Their rates have grown to be very competitive over the previous years to date.

The bank offers a 6.93% nominal interest rate for its 24 months fixed deposit account with a minimum deposit of R500.

While the principal amount can be accessed at maturity, your interest payouts can be received monthly, every 6 or 12 months.

2. Discovery Bank

Digital banking in South Africa has increased in recent years creating growth in the need for more banking products. New banks have emerged and are seeking to revolutionise the way we bank in South Africa.

Discovery Bank is one bank that takes internet banking seriously and has introduced behavioural banking to encourage healthy banking. As a new bank, Discovery bank has some of the best fixed deposit accounts in South Africa.

Discovery Bank offers up to a 6.20% interest rate from a deposit of at least R10 000 for their 24 months fixed deposit account. The effective interest rate of the account is 6.58%.

3. Capitec Bank

Wrapping up our top 3 in the 24 months best fixed deposit rates, Capitec Bank offers a 6.25% nominal interest rate which is one of the most enticing rates in South Africa in this category. The account has an effective interest rate of 6.43% in the process obtaining the 3rd spot on the 24 months fixed deposit account list.

Best 12 months fixed deposit rates

RatingBankMinimum DepositEffective Interest RateNominal Interest Rate
1Bidvest BankR10,000.005.85%5.70%
2African BankR500.005.75%5.61%
3Sasfin BankR10,000.005.75%5.60%

1. Bidvest Bank

Bidvest Bank offers 12 months fixed deposit account that has the best effective interest rate in South Africa of 5.85%. The account is available to pensioners and must be at least above the age of 55 at the time of account application. The account has a nominal interest rate of 5.70% and requires a minimum deposit of R10,000.00. Those that are below the age of 55 get a 5.60% effective interest rate on the same level of investment.

2. African Bank

Despite the wave of rate cuts this year, the African bank has continued to offer very competitive rates among its competitors.

From a minimum of R500.00 deposit amount, you can earn an impressive interest rate of 5.75% per annum.

The rate is dependant on the intervals you receive your interest payouts. The monthly interest payout rate is 5.61%, the semiannual rate is 5.67% and the interest payout at maturity is 5.75%.

3. Sasfin Bank

Sasfin Bank is offering very competitive rates on a 12 month fixed deposit account. The 12 months fixed deposit account offers a 5.60% nominal interest rate. The effective interest rate is 5.75%.

Best 6 months fixed deposit rates

RatingBankMinimum DepositEffective Interest RateNominal Interest Rate
1Bidvest BankR10,000.004.93%4.98%
2African BankR500.004.69%4.75%
3Discovery BankR10,000.004.34%4.30%

Investing for the short term can also yield favourable results when saving money into a fixed deposit account. A fixed deposit account for 6 months will earn you monthly interest that compounds. The results are good, you increase your money by a certain percentage.

Here are 3 banks offering the best 6 months fixed deposit rates in South Africa:

1. Bidvest Bank

Bidvest Bank offers the highest interest rate for the 6 months fixed deposit account. To get the highest interest rate on the 6 months fixed deposit account, you need to invest at least R10,000.00. The highest interest that can be earned on maturity is 4.93%.

2. African Bank

For a 6 months deposit term, your money can grow at an above-average rate of 4.69%. The interest rate allocated to your 6 months fixed deposit account is influenced by your preferred interest payout intervals.

The monthly interest payout rate is 4.65% while the expiry payout rate is 4.69

3. Discovery Bank

The 6 months fixed deposit account from Discovery bank requires a minimum deposit of R10 000. The nominal interest rate that you earn on the account is 4.34% with the effective interest rate at 4.30%.

 Best 3 months fixed deposit rates

RatingBankMinimum DepositEffective Interest RateNominal Interest Rate
1Bidvest BankR10,000.004.48%4.46%
2African BankR500,004.18%4.25%
3Sasfin BankR10,000.003.96%3.95%

1. Bidvest Bank

Bidvest Bank offers the second most competitive interest rate for 3 months fixed deposit with 4.46% nominal interest. The effective interest rate is 4.48% and requires a minimum investment amount of R10,000.00.

2. African Bank

African bank offer the best fixed deposit rate for a 3 months investment. The bank offers a 4.25% nominal interest rate. The effective rate is 4.18%. To earn the effective interest rate quoted, you need to invest a minimum amount of R500.00.

3. Sasfin Bank

A 3 months term fixed deposit account with Sasfin Bank can earn you a 3.96% interest at the end of the term. The nominal interest rate on Sasfin Bank’s 3 months fixed deposit account is 3.95%.

What is a Fixed Deposit?

In South Africa a fixed deposit account is a savings account tied to a certain time period. Once the capital has been invested and the timeframe (e.g., 12 months, 24 months, or 60 months) has been determined, the interest rate is fixed and locked in until the end of the specified time period.

For example, suppose a deposit is placed for 60 months at 8% but is withdrawn after 24 months. If the appropriate rate on the date of deposit for 24 months is 5%, the interest will be paid at that rate. Banks can levy a penalty for early withdrawal.

What is the benefit of a Fixed Deposit?

Fixed deposits provide guaranteed returns. When you open a Fixed Deposit account, the interest rate you are provided remains fixed during your tenure of investment. Even if interest rates in the broader market fall, your Fixed Deposit will not be affected. As a result, you don’t have to be concerned about the market fluctuations.

Can you lose money in a Fixed Deposit?

Yes, you can lose money in a fixed deposit. Inflationary pressures can have an adverse impact on Fixed Deposit returns. For example, if the rate of inflation is 7% and you invest in an FD with a return of 6.2%, you will actually lose 0.8%. That is why market-related investments such as equities, bonds and mutual funds are gaining popularity; they have been shown to easily surpass inflation.

Conclusion

Fixed deposits ensure capital protection and uniform flow of income. If you are risk-averse and do not want equity exposure, you might have to really consider them.

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