We are now setting aside just ￡2 out of every ￡100 of income, according to the government-run Office for Budget Responsibility. That is a huge drop from the ￡6 per ￡100 at the start of last year. And it’s set to get even worse. The official forecast predicts the so-called ratio will fall to ￡1.80 per ￡100 in the final three months of 2018 and halve to just 90p per ￡100 a year later.
What is an Isa? We explain what they do, how to pick the best one for you and how they can make you richer?
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.
THIS IS MONEY'S FIVE OF THE BEST SAVINGS DEALS
Tesco Bank pays 1.2% AER variable interest on its easy-access offering. (Rate due to increase from December 6 to 1.35%). The account can be opened with just ￡1. Rate drops to 0.8 per cent after 12 months
Atom Bank pays a best-buy 1.85% AER on its one-year fixed term deposit account. The account is operated online or via its smartphone app.Minimum deposit is ￡50.
RCI Bank pays 1.3% AER variable interest on its easy access deal. Deposits in its Freedom Savings Account have no FSCS protection, but you are covered for up to €100,000 by the French equivalent (FGDR).
Masthaven pays 1.85% AER fixed interest if you lock your cash away for 18 months. Alternatively savers can set their own fixed-rate term themselves. It requires a minimum ￡500 deposit and you can choose to receive interest monthly or annually
Coventry BS pays a best-buy rate of 1.3% AER (from December 1) on its easy access cash Isa. The account allows transfers in and requires a minimum deposit of just ￡1.
'Where's our ￡275k gone?' Frantic couple's cash goes missing for ten days after transfer to buy a house in Cornwall - until we step in
A retired couple moving back from Canada to settle in Cornwall were left in limbo after a huge payment seemingly went missing while being wired across the Atlantic. Brian Dover 78 and his wife Carolyn, 74, moved to Canada in 2013, but soon discovered that the winters in the North American country were too harsh for them.
NS&I to BOOST rates by full 0.25% on savings and Isas, while Premium Bonds odds shorten and 21m savers get a bigger prize pot
Millions of hard-pressed savers received a boost today with NS&I revealing it is passing the full base rate rise on - including shortening the odds on Premium Bond prizes. It says the current prize fund rate for Premium Bonds is 1.15 per cent - this will rise to 1.4 per cent on 1 December 2017 - with a bigger pot and more prizes.
Will 'open banking' be an open door to fraudsters? Fears mount that freeing up your data will help the conmen
A new era of banking will be ushered in from January next year - and security experts say it could put people at greater risk of scams and identity theft. Under new 'open banking' rules, Britain's biggest banks will be forced to share customer data with companies that demand it. Security experts say cyber-criminals will seek fresh opportunities under open banking.
Why would anyone want NatWest's pitiful 0.01% Instant Saver rate? SIMON LAMBERT asked the bank to explain...
NatWest's 0.01% Instant Saver rate is so bad that it speeds past measly on its way to parody. It is so small that there is almost no point in offering it or earning it. This rate delivers 10p on ￡1,000 in a year. And yet it believes that it's an acceptable rate to offer to customers. Why? We asked the bank to explain.
Fight back against the ￡4M-a-day interest rate betrayal... that's what banks pocket by failing to pass on the rise to savers
Big banks which are plundering millions of pounds a day from savers and borrowers. We can expose the cynical tactics Britain's savings giants have used to hit savers in the pocket. HSBC, Santander, Lloyds, Barclays and RBS-NatWest all slashed the returns on their main easy-access deals before last week's rise in the Bank of England base rate, which went from 0.25 per cent to 0.5 per cent.
Are Pensioner Bonds really back? The one-year bond with a familiar name paying 4.24% - but it's not official and your money is at risk
Hard-pressed older savers who are struggling to find a decent return on their cash may be tempted into products with high rates of interest that are prominently advertised on the internet - but they must be aware of the risks. One such product is being marketed for the over-55s with the tagline 'Pensioner Bonds Are Back' by a firm called Basset & Gold.
THIS IS MONEY'S FIVE OF THE BEST CURRENT ACCOUNTS
TSB's Classic Plus account will pay you 3% interest on up to ￡1,500 and up to £10-a-month if you maintain two direct debits and make 20 debit card payments each month (until June 2018). You must pay in ￡500 a month.
First Direct regularly tops polls for customer service. Its First Account offers £125 for joining and has a £250 interest-free overdraft. It also now pays cashback for spending with certain retailers. You must pay in ￡1,000 or pay a ￡10 monthly fee.
Santander's 123 account pays 1.5% interest on balances up to £20,000 and also gives 1 to 3% cashback on bills. You need to pay a £5 a month fee, pay in £500 a month and have two active direct debits.
Nationwide pays 5% interest on the first ￡2,500 in your Flex Direct account for the first year. Plus you get a fee-free overdraft for 12 months. Requires a ￡1,000 per month deposit.
M&S Bank's current account has a £125 gift card for joining, plus you get an extra £5 a month top up for the year. It has a ￡100 fee-free overdraft and no miniumum deposit criteria.
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.
Inside saving & banking
Premium Bonds winners
|Prize value||Winning bond No.||Area|
|￡50,000||218XH060858||Hereford and Worcester|