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TOPIC: Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest

Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 13 May 2021 00:45 #123084

  • Peter Cawson
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Thanks all. Just to clarify, I'm unlikely to want to change money from one currency to another and I already have Euro current accounts with ABN AMRO (with VISA credit and the more widely accepted Maestro debit card) and with Citibank (with their "Global" card). This latter card is particularly good if you hold accounts in a number of currencies as a Euro transaction will automatically be taken from your Euro account and a purchase in $US will be taken from your dollar account - all using the same card.

My problem (admittedly a good problem to have) is that the total balance of all my accounts with ABN AMRO exceeds their new maximum "free" allowance and they will charge me (from 1 July) interest at 0.5% on the amount over that allowance . Therefore I want to open other Euro savings accounts to hold the excess. I've just opened an HSBC sterling current account and this means I can now apply for a Euro Savings account. Lloyds (my long-standing sterling bank) are hopeless in that it's almost impossible to find (or have answered) the appropriate phone number and their Euro accounts can't be opened online or at branches. NatWest and Santander don't offer Euro accounts.

I'm not impressed by Revolut, although I'm sure they would be fine for day-to-day transactions and currency exchanges - these are not what I'm looking for. Just a safe "proper" bank where I can confidently leave my savings, even though no bank seems to be offering any interest on Euro savings accounts at present.

Peter

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 12 May 2021 21:34 #123082

  • Pete Milne
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Olly confirms my experience except that I use a Revolut account for day-to-day use. I did that exchange rate comparison a few years ago with similar results. I'd just add:
- Revolut is free, unless you choose the Premium version which I find no need for.
- A Nationwide current account is free unless you choose a Plus account. I find the fee is well covered by their insurance discounts.

I use a Belgian ING account for occasions when the Revolut card isn't accepted and for cash, but that needs a Belgian address.

Pete

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 12 May 2021 21:18 #123080

  • Olly Curtis
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For what it's worth, here's my experience:

I have a UK Nationwide account and a Starling account which I use for day to day transactions. When I bought a boat in Holland last year I got a Revolut account to deal with the FX.

Revolut and NW cost money. Exchanging money on Revolut is dead simple and very competitive as is sending it to European bank accounts. When I bought my boat I moved the money from NW to Revolut, changed it to Euros and sent it it to Holland all in about 5 minutes. I am not 15 years old so not particularly fast on my phone.

If you want to withdraw cash from ATMs abroad Starling is better. That's another reason I have both.

I often pay for items in Europe with either starling or Rvolut cards though you can never be sure they will be accepted. In Albert Heijn I always have to pay cash.

Just to check, I just opened a Starling Euro acccount ten minutes ago and put £10 in it. I now have Euro 11.58 in that account. On my Revolut app I changed £10 to Euros and got 11.63. I tried to see what the Post Office would give me online. Because of the minimum sum allowed I had to ask to change £1000 and they seem to be offering me 1150 euros for £1004.63.

Revolut works in a lot of other currencies too. On a trip to Turkey I just opened a lira account and changed everything back at the end of the trip. I also keep some Japanese yen. Starling seems only to offer Euros

I usually only keep relatively small amounts in the revolut account so FSCS doesn't bother me. It is an additional account, not a replacement.

There is Monzo as well, which is very popular, but I have not used it.
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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 23:45 #122972

  • Gordon Knight
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Not strictly true, John. See Revolut Savings Vault .
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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 23:30 #122970

  • John Frazer
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Revolut is not covered by the finacial services compensation scheme.
We have found Starling Bank easy to use with separate euro and sterling accounts though they do charge if you keep more than 50000

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 23:06 #122969

  • Peter Cawson
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Thanks Gordon and Pete

I'll give Revolut Web banking a go. May work out well for me. I'll also follow up HSBC on Monday as this may be simpler, although they require a current to be opened as well, which I don't have and don't really need. Lloyds seems to offer a Euro savings account too that may be better still as I currently bank with them. I feel sure I asked them when I first bought a boat in Europe but they didn't offer Euro accounts then.

Peter

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 20:38 #122967

  • Pete Milne
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Gordon Knight wrote: Funnily enough, I also use First Direct for UK banking. Great that you can use it either on your smartphone or on your PC (using the smartphone as the security sign on for the First Direct website).

Funnily enough, I've just closed my FD account because of their annoying security, which requires a password blind-keyed* into a phone (which an old fart with cataracts finds difficult). I've just moved my UK finances to a long-standing Nationwide account , which is just as secure but simpler to use. It also offers a reasonable exchange rate should I use the credit card or withdraw cash in emergency..

Pete

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 18:58 #122965

  • Gordon Knight
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Funnily enough, I also use First Direct for UK banking. Great that you can use it either on your smartphone or on your PC (using the smartphone as the security sign on for the First Direct website).

But actually, Pete, your namesake with the extra 'r' has done us a great favour. He's prompted me to look again at the Revolut offering.

Users have been complaining since launch about the lack of desktop functionality and they appear to have addressed it. See Revolut Web App .

I'm going to give it a try straight away and maybe Peter with the extra 'r' will do the same!
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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 18:39 #122963

  • Pete Milne
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I certainly second Revolut as an ideal interface between a UK bank account and either direct Euro payments or transfers to an EU bank. I've used it for five years, though I also have an ING Euro account. That's better for cash withdrawals and a few shops that don't take Mastercard (that Revolut uses). I've not used Revolut for savings, which I leave in a UK account - but I'll check out the savings option now.
As to phone banking... what a liberation! That's what I thought when First Direct opened as the first internet-only bank. Now, it's all in my pocket - protected by at least two passwords should I lose the phone.

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 12:44 #122952

  • Gordon Knight
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Marty Latham wrote:
Do you know if the French phones companies allow Revolut to be used for direct debit phone contracts?

Cheers
Marty


Revolut offers direct debits only in Euros and if you open a Euro IBAN account.

I see no reason why a French mobile phone company wouldn't accept that. I can't actually confirm it since I pay for my Lycamobile data with a continuous debit authority on my UK credit card.

Hope this helps, Marty.
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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 10:16 #122951

  • Jim Latimer
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Hi Peter, i live in Germany and i have had an HSBC account in the UK for the last 25 years. Never had a problem with bank transfers to our German or French account. All done on a PC, they do have an App for a smart phone, but we do not like the idea. As to negative interest, that is also a relevant factor here in Germany but as we do not have a 100k stashed away in a savings account it does not, and will not effect me. HSBC do have banks all over the EU, i have never looked at moving my account , as i get my pension paid in direct in the UK.
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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 07 May 2021 01:35 #122947

  • Marty Latham
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Hi Gordon

"Overseas payments in various currencies are a doddle and a physical card for contactless payments is also

Do you know if the French phones companies allow Revolut to be used for direct debit phone contracts?

Cheers
Marty

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 06 May 2021 23:09 #122944

  • Peter Cawson
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> If you're into online banking. Peter, you could consider Revolut. Not only do they offer accounts in several different currencies, but they also offer an interest-bearing option in their Savings Vault .

Thanks Gordon. Just too complicated. Spent the last 2 hours loading their app and trying to get an account set up. Whatever I try I can't get the nominal €10 into an account to open it. I HATE the idea of using a phone for banking - what if I lose it! A PC is OK as you can use any PC for online banking.

I think I'll look at HSBC instead, as I'm getting fed up with Revolut. It doesn't engender confidence being expected to deposit a pile of cash with an outfit that doesn't provide an email address, a phone number or even an online chat form.

Peter

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 05 May 2021 16:48 #122919

  • David Bulman
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Hi Peter, I bank with HSBC, which allows you to have accounts in different countries, but manage them centrally. Services charges depend on your overall balance rather than within one currency. If you have over £50K overall (current, savings and investment), there are no services charges. Its particularly useful to move money between currency/country accounts, which is instant
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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 05 May 2021 12:05 #122913

  • Gordon Knight
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If you're into online banking. Peter, you could consider Revolut. Not only do they offer accounts in several different currencies, but they also offer an interest-bearing option in their Savings Vault .

Overseas payments in various currencies are a doddle and a physical card for contactless payments is also available.

As for innovation and new services, they run rings around the established banks.

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Euro Bank Accounts - Negative Interest 04 May 2021 18:29 #122898

  • Peter Cawson
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I currently have Euro accounts with ABN AMRO and all has been very good until I received a notification that NEGATIVE INTEREST will apply if my balance (all accounts combined) exceeds a certain sum. This starts 1 July.

Unfortunately my combined balance does exceed this total so they will soon be charging me 0.50% on the amount that my balance exceeds this limit.

Can anyone suggest a bank where Euros can be kept in a Savings account with a POSITIVE interest rate? I'm a UK citizen and not "resident" in any other country. I could use Citibank but they pay nothing - better than me paying them though!

Many thanks. Peter

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