Following weeks of reluctance, Belfius has become the first major bank in Belgium to raise the interest on its savings accounts: from 1 July, the interest on the regular savings account will increase from 0.50% to 0.90%.
From the start of next month, Belfius will increase the base interest rate and adjust the fidelity premium on savings accounts. The regular savings account will then yield a total of 0.90% whilst the Fidelity account will move to 1.25%, the bank announced in a press release.
In December 2022, Belfius was the first major bank to raise savings interest and is now again leading the charge in a second wave of rate hikes. In recent weeks, many smaller banks such as MeDirect, NIBC and Santander already raised their interest rates to 2%.
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Additionally, numerous politicians put a lot of pressure on the banks to raise their interest rates: the Federal Government even threatened to raise the legal minimum interest rate if the banks did not raise their rates themselves.
Currently, banks receive more interest for parking their money at the European Central Bank (ECB) while also receiving more interest income from more expensive mortgage loans – something that citizens should be able to benefit from as well, many argue.
Later on Wednesday, Keytrade Bank also announced an increase in the rates for its savings accounts from 12 June: the base rate will drop from 0.6% to 0.9% and the loyalty bonus from 0.3% to 0.5% for the Azur account. The base rate of the High Fidelity account will increase from 0.4% to 0.75% and the loyalty bonus from 0.9% to 1.35%
Update at 16:15: This article was updated to include Keytrade Bank's announcement.