‘High Interest Rates Can Increase Your Income Opportunity’

Akweley Laryea

 HEAD OF Retail Banking at First National Bank, Akweley Laryea, says in a volatile economic landscape, the importance of prudent financial planning and savvy saving strategies are more critical than ever.

According to her, when inflation is high, the value of money seems ‘to shift like sand beneath our feet,’ with a knock-on effect on interest rates and the cost of living. Despite this, it’s encouraging to see many individuals and families continuing to explore ways to save.”

She asserted that savings and investment products were some of the most popular ways to preserve and grow money for Ghanaians. However, she said it was crucial for people to ensure that their investments worked for them, since inflation could impact the value of their savings.

“During high inflation and market volatility, people who keep their savings will not lose value unless they decide to withdraw the cash. Interest on savings may be lower compared to the inflation rate, but the value of their savings is steady and does not lose any value.”

Akweley further said that there was no one-size-fits-all approach when it came to saving solutions, as it was dependent on their circumstances and goals. Hence, the need to explore several solutions to cater for their needs.

She noted that savings accounts provided a flexible option to save money and often had lower interest rates than fixed term accounts, but these also provided the freedom to access money account owners needed to, adding this could be beneficial as it could be used as an emergency fund.

A fixed term investment, Ms. Laryea explained, was a good choice for people searching for high guaranteed returns on their investment. “If you do not require instant access to your money, fixed deposits are among the best options. Funds are fixed in an investment for a specified period of time which could be anywhere between 1-60 months, based on your preference, and upon maturity both principal plus accrued interest is paid to you. Alternatively, with First National Bank you can opt to pay out your interest on a monthly basis to your savings/current accounts whilst the principal remains fixed to provide access to funds to meet monthly needs.”

She further said a flexible fixed investment account such as the First National Bank Flexi-Fixed Investment Account could be a great compromise between the fixed-term and savings accounts adding this was for customers who would want to earn high returns of a fixed term investment but also had access to money in case of an emergency, as the account allowed withdrawals up to a limit. In addition, she said they could top-up their fixed investment at any time using the bank’s digital channels.

On Notice Deposit Investments, she said these were for customers who wanted to gradually grow their investment and be rewarded with higher interest as their funds grew.

“The First National Bank32-day Interest Plus account allows you to earn more interest on your account. The longer the funds stay with the bank, the higher the interest rate increases after 32-days and again hiked after 64-days of your money staying with the bank. As you add more money to your account, you are rewarded with higher interest to accelerate the growth of your funds. You just need to notify the bank when you are ready to withdraw your funds.

“You don’t need to halt or pause saving or investing because of a temporary economic difficulty. Saving during higher interest rate periods increases the income you earn over this time. The earlier you begin saving, the more you give yourself a better chance to grow your savings and be better off over the long term,” concludes Akweley.

A business desk report