I had always been a fan of OCBC 360 deposit account, and been on their 3.05% interest on savings for almost a year. From my market research, the bank probably offers the best savings interest in the Singapore banking market in terms of savings interest and also meeting my current cash portfolio as a saver so far. In a nutshell, it comprises of 4 main elements, namely a 0.05% base interest on your savings account and an additional 1% interest if you do any of the 3 following: 1) Credit your monthly salary into the account, 2) Pay 3 Bills, 3) Spend $400 on any OCBC plastic. As such, you can effectively earn 3.05%/pa savings interest, but only applicable on the first S$50,000 of your account balance.

I had been in touch with a few representatives from OCBC who got me in on a revision to the interest rates, with effect from May 1st 2015. The following will be in effect:

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  • Pay any 3 bills using OCBC Online Banking or GIRO every month for 0.5%/pa extra (down from 1%/pa).
  • Spend at least S$500 on your OCBC Credit Cards every month for 0.5%/pa extra (down from 1%/pa after S$400 spend).
  • Savings base interest remains at 0.05% (Unchanged)
  • Monthly salary deposit bonus interest remains at 1% (Unchanged)

It seems that OCBC had met their fresh fund injection target which was really successful since the 360 account introduction about a year ago, thus the interest reduction. If you satisfy the above elements, you can still earn a base interest of 2.05%/pa on the first S$50,000 (~approx $85/monthly) of your account balance, which is a 33% reduction in monthly bonus interest.

OCBC indicated to make up for the interest reduction, there will be also additional “bolt-ons” to allow you to increase your 360 interest further, but they are unable to announce it as of yet. I am guessing that could range from insurance, investments or installment plans, which will bring the maximum interest, possibly back to the 3% area. If you ask me, it sounds pretty much like a DBS multiplier plan to me now.

OCBC will offer an official press release in due time, possibly around the end of April for the interest to be in effect at the start of May this year.

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