Is the open banking revolution a fraudster’s charter?

Under new laws, you can now ask your current account provider to share details of your income, spending habits and debts with third-party internet companies. You are also now allowed to hand over your password and log-in details to these firms. The idea is that the third party can save you money by helping you budget or shop around for cheap deals.

The big High Street banks now hold a huge £630bn of our money in easy-access accounts, up £34bn over 12 months, figures from trade body UK Finance show.

The banking arm of one of the famous Knighstbridge department store had some £400 million in 10,000 savings accounts, which have been transferred to the new digital bank.

Savers face a postcode lottery that can boost cash Isa returns by as much as a third as small building societies reserve the top rates for those living in their areas.

The banking revolution that launched on Saturday scares me. The new laws are supposed to encourage us to share our carefully guarded banking secrets with tiny firms we've never heard of.

The best bank accounts to switch to in 2018

Despite the best of intentions to shop around, most people stick with the same bank for years in spite of poor service, hefty fees and miserly 'perks'. But with cash payouts of up to £200 and interest rates that far out-strip inflation, upping sticks could help get your finances back on track after the Christmas excess.

NatWest is offering current account switchers a £125 cash incentive to switch to one of its accounts.The new offer means you could pocket nearly £200 in the first year with a Reward Account

Savings rates are at an all-time low, so it's worth looking at alternative ways to make your money work harder. An interest-paying current account could do the trick.

Where to turn when 4% NS&I pensioner bond deal finishes

A huge £9bn has been stashed away in NS&I's three-year 65+ Guaranteed Growth Bonds, which mature between January 15 and May 15. The bad news is that there's nothing to match the rate they have earned over the past three years. So, what should you do if you don't want to take big risks with your cash?

The deal puts its Easy Saver just ahead of RCI Bank's Freedom Savings Account and the Post Office Online Saver, both at 1.3 per cent. After one year your rate drops to just 0.2 per cent.

Savers have suffered the worst year for cash Isa returns since the accounts first appeared more than 18 years ago on April 6, 1999, our investigation has found.

Isaac Newton 2018 50p set to be a rare collector's coin

Most eager numismatists know that the rarest 50p in circulation is the Kew Gardens one, minted in 2009, with a run of just 210,000. However, 2018 could see the dawn of an even rarer coin than the Kew Gardens one - and make it worth a mint in the near future. The coin, pictured, features Sir Isaac Newton and can only be obtained in person in one place, the Royal Mint Experience in Wales.

A toxic mix of bank branch and cash machine closures could soon create cashless 'deserts' across swathes of the country, warns consumer group Which?

When a local bank branch closes, it causes widespread inconvenience as customers are forced to change the way they bank, either by travelling further afield or signing up to online banking.

Will easy-access and fixed savings rates improve in 2018?

Savers are still struggling to find a decent return. This is nothing new in recent years with rates quickly racing downwards. However, the tail end of 2017 offered a chink of light, albeit a small one. Bonds and easy-access accounts have seen some upward movement while National Savings and Investments boosted the rates on a number of its products, including popular Premium Bonds. Can they improve further this year?

Record-low savings payouts are driving savers to become investors and take bigger risks to boost their incomes. But it is not the stock market that many are choosing.

Under new EU rules, banks can be forced to reveal details of your balance, direct debits and how often you go into the red to third parties.

NatWest to close 1-in-4 branches

Jackie Martel, right, and Gillian Woolnough, left, from the picturesque East Sussex market town of Wadhurst, will see their community of around 5,000 people will lose their last Natwest branch. In total, bailed-out Royal Bank of Scotland, the parent company of NatWest, is closing one in four of its branches by June next year. The giant cull will leave 24 towns and villages without a single bank. An estimated 680 staff will lose their jobs.

Three years ago some lucky savers got offered an astonishingly good deal on Pensioner Bonds - unfortunately they are now getting letters saying that their time is up.

'I cashed out my Isas and lumped half of it in Bitcoin'

Recently, a taxi driver told me how he had taken money out of his Isas - and turned to Bitcoin and Premium Bonds instead. A foolish strategy - or a genius move? It's hard to say, but at least he has a balance.

At the end of last year, the Post Office was carrying out a record one million banking transactions each day. Here's all you need to know about what it can - and can't - offer.

Oval lets you save some money every time you post on Facebook, and it says it's planning similar moves with other social media networks in the not too distant future.

Budget has zero mentions for savers and no Isa limit rise

Prudent Britons hoping for some cheer in the Budget today were left bitterly disappointed, with the official 86 page document containing zero mentions of the word 'savers'. The Isa allowance will not even rise with inflation in April, with the tax-free limit for 2018 to 19 remaining frozen at £20,000 - but Junior Isas will be up-rated in line with CPI to £4,260.

Providers launch top-paying accounts only to close them quickly to new savers. Those who manage to grab them continue to earn the competitive rate.

Barclays now allows customers who use their mobile apps to pay money into their accounts this way. Once a customer logs in to their mobile app they must look for the option in to 'pay in cheques'.

What is an Isa? We explain how to pick the best for you

Isas used to be so simple. Now there are new Isas popping up all over the place with ever-more complexity. So we go back to basics and explain what they are and what they're good for. In this episode of the Big Money Questions, senior investment planner at Vanguard James Norton goes through what you need to know, and how you can get started if you are saving for the long term and want to open a stocks and shares Isa.

Post Office Online Isa now offers 1.07 per cent. But this rate is boosted by a 0.82 percentage-point bonus which runs for a year. After that your rate drops to just 0.25 per cent.

Recently, I received an unusual 50p coin in my change, which I had never seen before. It shows two motorcyclists racing with a wreath-style pattern on either side - is it rare?

Paragon Bank has launched a new easy access savings deal paying 1.31 per cent, which shoots straight to the top of This is Money's independent best buy savings tables.

The deal puts its Easy Saver just ahead of RCI Bank's Freedom Savings Account and the Post Office Online Saver, both at 1.3 per cent. After one year your rate drops to just 0.2 per cent.

Protected against a bust: Make sure your savings are safe by not putting more than £85,000 into each authorised bank

The way you spread out your savings with banks is crucial in terms of protection and compensation. We show you how to get protected.

This is Money's five favourite best buy cash Isas 2018

Although cash Isas don't currently offer fantastic rates, it is still worthwhile opening one to shield money away from the taxman. Our savings correspondent Lee Boyce picks his five favourite cash Isas for savers in 2016 - essential reading to help you choose a top savings account for your money. This page is kept up-to-date throughout the year - bookmark it for the very latest developments.



Premium Bonds winners

January 2018
Prize value Winning bond No. Area
£1,000,000 1TA132848 Wiltshire
£1,000,000 112TQ018654 Kent
£100,000 189KL156240 Kent
£100,000 181WQ453770 Southampton
£100,000 179HF064246 Essex
£100,000 126GQ699112 Northern Ireland
£50,000 314SM472450 Wirral
£50,000 314PN128151 Nottinghamshire
£50,000 306FS870560 Croydon
£50,000 263DK009743 East Sussex
£50,000 249NH027648 Tyne and Wear
More Premium Bonds winners

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