Best investment platforms paying high interest on cash

Some trading apps and platforms now offer competitive interest rates on uninvested cash.

You could get respectable interest on uninvested cash that’s sitting in your share trading account – or 0%, depending on which platform you’re with.

Despite base rate hikes from the Bank of England (BoE), many savers aren’t aware that you can get some great interest rates with investing platforms.

It’s slightly under the radar, but there are several UK share dealing accounts offering some competitive rates on uninvested cash – money that’s sitting idle in your investment account.

So, instead of having your investments and cash savings held separately, you could consider keeping them under one roof. But be aware that some of these accounts won’t offer you the same protection as you’d get with a savings account.

Another potential hack is that some apps and platforms will pay this interest on cash held in your stocks and shares ISA. So you could use one ISA account as a hybrid for cash and investments.

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Share dealing providers with competitive interest rates

We’ve shown the most competitive rates we found among investment platforms in June 2023, in the table below.

ProviderVariable interest rateMax cash limit or rulesStocks and shares ISAFSCS protection
Lightyear4.5%None
Bestinvest4.35%None
Freetrade1%
3%
£2,000 (Standard)
£4,000 (Plus)
Vanguard2.6%None
XTB2.5% – 4.9%2.5% (portfolios under £30,000)
4.9% (£30,000+ portfolio)
Fidelity3.35%None
Trading 2122.14%None
Hargreaves Lansdown1.5% – 3.7% Tiered system depending on balance and account type
interactive investor1.75% – 3.75%1.75% (first £10,000)
2.75% (anything between £10,000 – £100,000)
3.75% (£100,000+)
AJ Bell1.95% – 2.45% 1.95% (first £10,000)
2.45% (£10,000+)
eToro2% – 5.3%2% ($10,000+)
2.4% ($25,000+)
5% ($50,000+)
5.3% ($250,000+)

Should you keep cash on an investing platform?

It can be useful, but it’s also important to be aware of the risks. Not every provider comes with protection from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), which protects deposits of up to £85,000 in the unlikely event that a provider goes bust. So, take a quick look at what level of protection you get from a platform before depositing funds.

Although some interest rates on offer may not beat top easy-access rates from banks, this can still be a convenient option, especially if you’re keeping that cash aside to invest in the future. This way, it’s in your account and ready to be invested whenever you want, and earning a return rather than gathering dust.

Picking an investment platform for the cash interest rate shouldn’t be your only deciding factor, but it’s definitely a helpful bonus.

Is it better to save or invest right now?

George Sweeney DipFA

Finder money expert George Sweeney answers

It depends on your short and long-term goals. With interest rates still at a high level, you can earn a decent return from top savings accounts. However, these rates are likely to start dropping as soon as the base rate dips. If you have money that you want to access sometime soon, then a savings account could be a good option. But, if you’re prepared to put you money aside for a longer timeframe for a potentially higher reward, then you might want to consider investing.

The benefit of these investment accounts paying interest is that you can get the best of both worlds, keeping some funds as cash earning interest and then investing the remainder, all under one roof. Saving cash is still looking attractive in the near-term but if you want to beat inflation and grow your wealth, investing has often proven to be the best option in the long run.

Bottom line

Earning interest on uninvested cash held in your investment account is a nice bonus. However, if you’re really keen on simply saving your cash, you can probably find better rates with proper savings accounts. Really, you should be using your investment account for investing (sorry to point out the obvious).

Nevertheless, as an investor, it can be worth keeping some dry powder (cash) to one side, ready to invest if you spot a good opportunity and I don’t think anyone is going to complain about earning some interest on idle cash that’s sat on the sidelines. There is quite a variation in the rates offered by investment accounts, so make sure you shop around and check for any rules or restrictions if this is important to you.

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