Westpac may now be known as one of the four pillars of the Australian financial industry, but holding a place as a market leader is not new to Westpac – the first bank in Australia. In 1817 Westpac was known as the Bank of New South Wales and after acquiring the Commercial Bank of Australia in 1982 changed its name to Westpac Banking Corporation.
After merging with St.George bank in 2008, Westpac now strives to serve over 10 million customers in both Australia and New Zealand. With more and more people now recognising Westpac as one of the most respected financial providers, this institution offers a secure means to manage your earnings.
Compare Westpac savings accountsRates last updated March 27th, 2015
Compare Westpac transaction accountsRates last updated March 27th, 2015
Compare Westpac term depositsRates last updated March 27th, 2015
Westpac’s continued commitment to Australian banking customers
- Westpac are focussing on bringing back over 600 local bank managers to branches across Australia.
- At March 2009 Westpac employed approximately 38,000 people in Australia, New Zealand and around the world.
- Westpac has approximately 530,000 people and institutions in Australia and around the world who are shareholders.
- From November 2009 Westpac began offering an interest free loan to help eligible Australians make green improvements to their homes.
How to compare Westpac interest rates
Interest rates can be a confusing part of banking and can distract you when you are trying to choose a savings or transaction account. While certainly playing a major role in the money you will accumulate from your savings account, the features also provided will also play a major role in the interest that is actually received. Here you can see a comparison of the interest rates offered on Westpac savings and transaction accounts.
- Do not make a high interest rate the top priority on a transaction account. Your transaction account is for everyday use and you don’t want to have to worry about how many transactions you have made that month which might jeopardise your interest earned – this is why there are specialist high interest savings accounts. Your top priority with a transaction account is to keep it convenient and tailored towards your own spending habits otherwise you may see yourself tied up in a range of unwanted fees.
- Westpac transaction accounts only offer interest to pensioners. As you can see, the only Westpac transaction account which offers interest returns on your funds is the Deeming account for over 55s and retirees.
- Don’t discard a Westpac transaction account if it doesn’t earn you interest. It’s alright to have more than one bank account and when you open both a Westpac transaction account and a high interest savings account you can easily link your everyday funds to a high interest account to earn you those returns.
- Check for promotional interest rates. The Westpac eSaver and Reward Saver accounts are both currently offering promotional interest rates. These promotional rates are set to expire, or are based on the usage of the account and will not remain constant for the life of the account. Therefore, before you choose a savings account with a high interest rate, make sure the other features and fees of the account suit your needs too as the interest rate may not always be as attractive.
- Find out the standard interest rate before opening a savings account. The standard interest rate will be that which your funds earn after the promotional period ends. Finding the standard interest rate will also tell you whether the rate is a direct reflection of the RBA’s cash rate, or whether it is Westpac’s own standard variable rate.
- Find out the conditions of the interest rate. Your savings account interest rate may be subject to the condition that you make no withdrawals in a month, or you deposit a certain amount into your savings account each month. Again, this is why it is important to compare both the promotional interest rate, and the standard interest rate.
How to choose the best Westpac account for your earnings
The best Westpac account is one which will give you access to your funds when, where and how you want and one which will reward you for how you use your account. The last thing you want to deal with after spending so much time building up your savings is to then be tied down by annoying withdrawal fees.
- Look for promotions or specialised products which are specifically targeted to you. As well as a specialised retiree transaction account, Westpac also offers a benefits package to full time university, college or TAFE students, and under 21s.
- The Westpac Choice Student account offers you fee free branch and telephone banking, a discounted rate on personal loans, bonus interest on a linked Reward Saver account and you’ll get the $30 annual fee on a student Visa Debit card waived for the first year.
- Open a Westpac Choice Youth account if you are under 21 and enjoy fee free branch, EFTPOS, ATM and telephone banking, bonus interest on a Reward Saver account and a discount on a personal loan interest rate.
- Understand the features of your Westpac accounts and use them. Your account may offer free BPAY transactions because it is an online-based account so don’t go into the post office to pay your bills.
- Open your savings or transaction account online. This stops you procrastinating about finding time to go to a branch and ensures you don’t forget about finding a better transaction account, or depositing those extra funds to a savings account. Instead you can set up your new Westpac accounts online in a few minutes and in some cases be saving right away – when you can see instant results, you can stay motivated more easily.
- Do you travel overseas often? The Westpac choice account offers free withdrawals from their partner ATMs, though currency conversion fees and exchange rates still apply. These include Westpac NZ, Westpac Pacific Banking, BNP Paribas, Deustche Bank, Barclays Bank, ABSA, Bank of America, ScotiaBank, Ukrisbbank and Bank of Nanjing.
Choosing the best savings or transaction account is as easy as determining your spending habits and savings goals, and then comparing the Westpac accounts listed here. Finding the right account for your savings is never as simple as finding the one with the highest interest rate. The flexibility of the account options will play a huge role in the total amount of money you will be able to earn. Once you have both these clear in your mind, you will see the connections between your needs and the Westpac accounts appear before your eyes and you can follow our secure links to the Westpac banking website to sign up today.