11th September 2023 - 16 min read
(Last update: 11 September 2023)
It’s no secret that all of us would love for our savings to earn more money over time. Fixed deposits aren’t as liquid as savings accounts in the event you need immediate cash, but savings accounts basically give no interest these days… right?
As it turns out, there are several savings accounts in Malaysia that offer high interest rates – some with over 6% p.a.! Of course, there are certain conditions that need to be met to “unlock” the high interest, but there are also some savings accounts that easily offer more than several times the interest of a basic savings account.
Here are some of the best high interest savings accounts in Malaysia.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 6.15% p.a.
At present, the Standard Chartered Privilege$aver savings account offers the highest interest rate on a savings account, provided the account holder fulfils certain conditions to earn bonus interest rates. In total, there are four bonuses that you can tap into to increase the interest from the base 0.05% p.a., namely Deposit Bonus, Credit & Debit Card Bonus, Invest/Insure Bonus, and Loyalty Bonus.
First, you need to deposit at least RM3,000 in fresh funds every month to unlock an additional 0.70% p.a. Deposit Bonus interest. On top of that, you can earn up to 1.40% p.a. of Credit/Debit Card Bonus interest when you use your credit and debit cards: 0.70% p.a. when you spend at least RM1,000 with your Standard Chartered credit card, and another 0.70% p.a. when you perform at least five retail transactions on your debit card.
Next, unlock another 2% p.a. Invest/Insure Bonus interest for up to three months by investing a minimum of RM40,000 in unit trust, or purchasing an insurance policy with a minimum of RM40,000 annual premium. And finally, Standard Chartered has introduced a new Loyalty Bonus of 2.00% p.a. when you increase your average balance in your account by at least RM3,000 every month.
Do note as well that the Standard Chartered Privilege$aver account has set a cap on the amount of interest that can be earned via the bonus categories. For each category, bonus interest will be credited on up to RM100,000 of your monthly average balance (MAB).
At 6.15% p.a., you’ll be earning a pretty good chunk of interest each month. A good way to hit the save requirement for a 0.70% p.a. interest is to use this account as your salary deposit account – you just need to inform your HR department for this. It’s also not a stretch to spend with StanChart’s credit and debit cards. For credit cards, in particular, the Simply Cash and Smart credit cards yield cashback as you spend.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 6.00% p.a.
UOB also has the One Account that allows you to earn up to 6.00% p.a. interest if you’re willing to take some additional steps to earn bonus interest, which raises the base rate from 0.10% p.a..
The maximum interest rate of 6.00% p.a. is unlocked if your account has a balance of between RM50,000 and RM100,000, and you carry out two selected transactions – chosen from any of the following six tasks:
Meanwhile, if your account balance is less than RM50,000, you can earn a maximum of 2.00% p.a. by carrying out any of the two transactions that you prefer. To further maximise the rewards that you can earn, consider spending on UOB credit cards such as the UOB ONE card, which earns you cashback for petrol, dining, and grocery expenses!
Interestingly, the UOB One Account stops offering bonus interest when your account balance exceeds RM100,000, although its base rate hikes up from 0.10% p.a. to 2.00% p.a.. The effective interest rate that you can earn when you reach this range of account balance also decreases; for instance, if you maintained an account balance of RM125,000, you will only get an effective interest rate of 3.60% p.a. (as compared to 4.00% p.a. if you had a balance of RM50,000 to RM100,000).
Profit rate: Tiered, up to 5% p.a.
We should probably mention straight off the bat that the Rize Commodity Murabahah Savings Account-i (referred to as well as the Rize Savings Account-i) is provided by Rize, a fully digital bank powered by Al-Rajhi Bank launched at the end of 2022 – which means all of its services are available only online (although you can probably walk in to Al-Rajhi Bank to ask for assistance). So this means that if you prefer traditional banking, Rize Savings Account-i may not be for you.
In conjunction with its launch, Rize is running a special deposit rate campaign where you can earn 5% p.a. profit rate on the first RM5,000 deposited into your Rize Savings Account-i for six months – with no other requirements, conditions or tiers. This make it a great choice for those without the huge funds to meet minimum balance requirements or those who don’t fancy having to fulfil monthly spend or deposit requirements to qualify for higher interest. Meanwhile, subsequent amounts (RM5,001 and above) will net you 4% p.a..
That said, note that this campaign is for a limited time only, and will end on 31 December 2023, so best to hurry if you’re interested in tapping into this ongoing campaign! The Rize Savings Account-i is Syariah-compliant.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 4.15% p.a.
The Hong Leong Bank Pay&Save is yet another savings account that requires you to carry out certain activities each month in order to qualify for interest. However, while the Privilege$aver and RHB Smart Account do offer a minimal base rate, the Pay&Save’s interest rates are wholly dependent on four required actions.
Pay&Save offers a Savings Interest of 2.25% p.a. if you deposit RM2,000 in one sum monthly into your account, 0.50% p.a. e-Xtra Interest for a minimum spend of RM500 on online payments for eligible payments (bills, loans, and credit cards), and 0.50% p.a. Debit Card Interest when you spend at least RM500 in retail transactions using your Hong Leong debit card.
Finally, there is an extra step that can earn you up to another 0.90% p.a. interest, but this is only applicable if you trade in shares. The 0.90% p.a. tier is available when you trade a monthly amount of more than RM100,000. If the amount of share traded is lower than that, you’ll be earning a bonus interest of between 0.30% to 0.70% p.a. instead.
If you are considering getting the Pay&Save account, do make sure that you’re familiar with the terms and conditions beforehand. For example, you can only be eligible for the Savings Interest when you deposit RM2,000 for three months consecutively. Moreover, the e-Xtra Interest and Debit Card Interest are each capped at RM30 per month. Similar to the conditions set by several other high-interest savings accounts, there are also interest earning caps on amount balances of up to a maximum of RM100,000.
In addition to its high interest rates, the Pay&Save account had also been upgraded with a multi-currency feature back in 2020, allowing accountholders to send and spend in 12 foreign currencies. These include the Singapore dollar, Australian dollar, New Zealand dollar, Japanese yen, and euro – among others. In fact, HLB says that the Pay&Save is the “only local bank account that comes with 12 foreign currencies.”
The Pay&Save account also has a Syariah-compliant equivalent in the form of Pay&Save Account-i.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 3.35%
RHB Smart Account works very similarly to Standard Chartered Privilege$aver as you’ll need to carry out several transactions to increase the interest from the base 0.05% p.a. – which you get by maintaining a minimum account balance of RM1,000 – to a maximum 3.35% p.a.. This can be done via six categories of such transactions, namely Save, Pay, Spend, Financing, Trade, and Convert.
Under the Save category, you can earn a bonus interest rate of 1.80% p.a. when you deposit RM2,000 in fresh funds into your Smart Account each month. As for the remaining five categories, you can receive an interest rate of either 0.75% p.a. or 1.50% p.a, depending on which requirement you fulfil:
|Category||Requirement||Bonus rate (% p.a.)|
|Pay||– Pay minimum 3 bills |
– Pay minimum 6 bills
|Spend||– Spend a minimum of RM1,000 in retail purchases via credit or debit card |
– Spend a minimum of RM2,500 in retail purchases via credit or debit card
|Financing||– Minimum home/auto financing payment of RM1,000 |
– Minimum home/auto financing payment of RM2,500
|Trade||– Minimum brokerage amount of RM100 via RHB Investment Bank |
– Minimum brokerage amount of RM250 via RHB Investment Bank
|Convert||– Convert minimum RM5,000 from MYR to foreign currencies or paper precious metal in RHB Multi Currency Account/-i|
– Convert minimum RM10,000 from MYR to foreign currencies or paper precious metal in RHB Multi Currency Account/-i
Again, note that the maximum bonus interest you can earn via this structure is capped at 3.30% p.a. (not inclusive of the base 0.05% p.a.). So for example, even if you do fulfil the requirements for maximum earning via the Save, Pay, and Spend categories (1.80% p.a. + 1.50% p.a. + 1.50% p.a. = 4.80% p.a.), you’ll still only enjoy a bonus rate of 3.30%. Do also be aware that the bonus interest earned under these categories will only be applicable to your account balance of up to RM100,000.
There is actually another 1.0% p.a. interest that you can earn by investing a minimum of RM1,000 in eligible RHB financial products (Invest category). These include products such as non-EPF investment, private retirement schemes (PRS), and unit trust funds. If you do carry out this transaction as well, then you’ll qualify for a total of 4.35% p.a..
Previously, the RHB Smart Account had a less accommodating earning structure which only rewarded transactions in the Save, Pay, and Spend category (as well as the additional Invest category). This new structure ultimately provides customers with more flexibility and ease in earning bonus interest rates; you can “mix and match” several transactions that best meet your needs and level of expenses – and still be rewarded.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 3.25% p.a.
Like the StanChart Privilege$aver, RHB Smart Account, and the Hong Leong Bank Pay&Save, the OCBC 360 account offers bonus interest when you perform certain transactions with your OCBC online banking account as well as OCBC credit or debit cards. The base interest is set at 0.10% p.a., but the three additional transactions (Deposit, Pay, and Spend) yield a bonus interest of 1.05% p.a. each, thereby offering up to 4.20% p.a. altogether.
First, you simply need to deposit a minimum of RM500 every month into the OCBC 360 account to earn a 1.05% p.a. bonus interest. An additional 1.05% p.a. will be given when you pay at least three bills with your OCBC online banking facility in a month. This includes credit card bills, loans, as well as JomPay bill payments! Finally, a further 1.05% p.a. interest will be credited when you spend at least RM500 on your OCBC credit or debit card, bringing the total interest to 3.25% p.a. for that month.
Looking at the conditions, it actually isn’t too difficult to hit the 3.25% p.a. interest. Enabling JomPay bill payments makes it easy to hit the three transactions required. You can also earn additional cashback for that RM500 spend for credit/debit cards via the OCBC 365 credit card, which offers 1% cashback for the first RM1,000 charged. Just note that multiple bill payments to the same biller in a single month will count as one transaction for the OCBC 360 account. Moreover, the 3.25% p.a. interest is only applicable on the first RM100,000 of your balance.
For new customers, there is actually an ongoing campaign where you can up the interest rate to 4.20% p.a.. This campaign will let you earn 2.00% p.a. Deposit bonus interest instead of the usual 1.05% p.a. if you deposit at least RM3,000 every month for the first three months (as you can see in the image below). Note that this campaign will run only until 31 December 2023.
OCBC also has a Syariah-compliant variant with the same benefits, known as the OCBC Al-Amin 360, with a similar profit rate.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 3.20% p.a.
The UOB Stash is a more straightforward savings account that offers bonus interest when you maintain or increase your account balance every month, bringing its total interest up from a base rate of 0.05% p.a.. Its highest 3.20% p.a. interest tier is unlocked when your total account balance is above RM100,000.
Note, though, that UOB Stash stops offering bonus interest when your account balance exceeds RM200,000; you will only earn an increased base rate of 1.60% p.a.. As a result, UOB Stash’s best rate of 3.20% p.a. is applicable only when your account balance ranges between RM100,000 to RM200,000. If your account balance goes beyond RM200,000, the effective interest rate (EIR) will begin to decrease. For instance, if you have RM250,000 in your account, you only earn an EIR of 2.22% p.a. instead of the 2.38% p.a. applicable for account balances between RM100,000 to RM200,000.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 3.00% p.a.
If you’re looking to “park” a large sum of cash and earn the most interest with the least hassle, the Alliance SavePlus account is one of the top choices. The only requirement to unlock the 3.00% p.a. interest is to maintain your account balance at above RM500,000. If your account balance is less than this required threshold, then your savings rate will range between 0% p.a. to 2.85% p.a..
Even though it is technically classified as a current account, there really isn’t that much difference between the Alliance SavePlus account and other savings accounts in this list. Plus, if you maintain an account balance of above RM10,000 every month, you will also enjoy waivers for unlimited MEPS withdrawals, interbank funds transfers, interbank GIRO, and even the debit card annual fee.
Interest rate: Tiered, up to 2.50% p.a.
The Affin Invikta Account is another fairly straightforward savings account that lets you earn a preferential interest rate of 2.50% p.a. – but the catch is that you need to maintain your account balance between RM250,000 to RM2,499,999.99. So if you find the requirements for Alliance SavePlus account at RM500,000 too steep, this could be another option for you. Meanwhile, if your balance falls below RM250,000, you will earn an interest rate of between 0% to 1.85%.
Do note that the Affin Invikta Account is by invitation only as it is part of a premium banking service and membership that was rolled out by Affin Bank back in 2021, along with several other perks. To become an Affin Invikta member, you’ll need to meet one of several criteria, namely having assets under management (AUM) of RM200,000 and more, a monthly salary income of RM15,000, a mortgage loan of RM800,000 with Affin Bank, or a hire purchase loan of RM200,000 with Affin Bank.
Profit rate: Tiered, up to 2.40% p.a.
The AmBank eFlex is another account that lets you earn bonus interest to increase the base rate by maintaining your balance account above a certain threshold. The eFlex account starts out by giving you a base rate of 0.5% p.a. interest for your balance account of any amount. However, if you are able to maintain your balance at a minimum of RM20,000, then the interest on your daily end-of-day balance will be topped up to the prevailing three-month FD/TD-i rate of 2.40%
Note that you can only apply for the AmBank eFlex account via the AmOnline Mobile app as it is an online-exclusive product.
Interest rate: Up to 2.20% p.a.
The OCBC Flex Account has undergone a few rebranding efforts before settling on its current version; it was initially known as the nuon Account before being renamed as the OCBC FRANK Account, and then finally the Flex Account. Despite the change in name, the account’s earning mechanics pretty much remained somewhat the same – it allows you to split your funds into two sections, the Spend Pot and the Save Pot. The Spend Pot works like an ordinary savings account which you can withdraw funds from, whereas the Save Pot comes with a higher interest rate and is designed to encourage saving.
The Spend Pot earns you 0.30% p.a. in interest whereas money in your Save Pot (a minimum of RM20) in your Save Pot earns you a bonus of 1.90% p.a. on top of the 0.30% p.a. base rate. Money in your Save Pot has to be moved back to your Spend Pot before you can use it for withdrawals, payment, and so on, which can easily be done via the OCBC mobile banking app. There is no lock-in period or withdrawal penalty for the Save Pot.
Moreover, the OCBC Flex Account’s debit card has a very valuable offering for overseas transactions: there are 0% bank mark-ups for foreign transactions or online spend in foreign currencies using the OCBC Flex Debit Card.
All savings account listed here are insured by PIDM for up to RM250,000, which means that in the event the bank goes bankrupt, your savings account with that bank is insured and can be claimed up to RM250,000.
In addition, there are a few other savings accounts with competitive interest rates that are not listed here. We omitted these as the requirements to unlock those rates are complicated – the ones mentioned here are straight forward, and the requirements are clearly spelled out. There are also some that are by-invitation only. That said, if you do find a savings account with better rates than those listed here, let us know!
Subscribe to our exclusive weekly newsletter and we’ll bring you the week’s highlights of financial news, expert tips, guides, and the latest credit card and e-wallet deals.
Stay tuned for what’s to come next in the personal finance world