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OakNorth Bank launches market-leading fixed rate and easy access cash ISAs as it looks to boost SME lending by a further £1.5bn in 2018

OakNorth – the bank for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs – has today announced it is entering the ISA market with two new market-leading products: a 12-month fixed rate cash ISA offering 1.35% and an easy access cash ISA offering 1.05%.Its fixed rate cash ISA currently tops the best-buy table alongside two other providers[1], while its easy access cash ISA occupies a joint-third position[2]. The minimum balance is £1,000 while the maximum balance in the current year is £20,000 in accordance with the HMRC’s 2017/18 tax year ISA allowance. Additionally, previous years’ ISAs can be transferred in with no upper limit. Interestingly, OakNorth offers these as portfolio ISAs, meaning that a customer can open one of each ISA and split this year’s ISA allowance between them.

Since its launch in September 2015, OakNorth has built its deposits customer base to more than 15,000 customers, offering a range of savings products to both individuals and businesses. Similarly to most challenger banks, OakNorth offers competitive rates with its products usually appearing in the top five positions of best-buy tables. The bank which focuses on lending between £0.5m-£25m to fast-growth businesses and established property developers, has built a high quality loan book of over £900m and is hoping to lend a further £1.5bn to SMEs next year.

Joel Perlman, co-founder of OakNorth, said: “Since our launch, we have attracted over 15,000 deposit customers whose savings have helped fund our lending and enabled us to support numerous UK businesses in achieving their growth ambitions. As we look ahead to 2018, we are keen to continue building our high-quality loan book, lending a further £1.5bn to SMEs, so we felt now was the right time to expand our product range and hopefully attract even more customers.

“The UK’s largest banks continue to offer pitiful returns – 0.51% on average for 12 and 24-month fixed rate cash ISAs[3]– and many savers have been disillusioned by the fact that these banks have not passed on the recent interest rate rise to them. The launch of our new competitive fixed rate and easy access cash ISAs will hopefully be a step in the right direction towards rectifying this, giving both our existing and prospective customers the opportunity to make their savings go further.”

[1]Source: Moneysupermarket(as at 28.11.17)

[2]Source: Moneysupermarket(as at 28.11.17)

[3]HSBC offering 0.20% (source: here); RBS offering 0.80% (source: here); Santander offering 0.55% for a 24 month fixed cash ISA (source: here); Lloyds offering 0.50% for a 24 months fixed cash ISA (source: here).

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