Savers in Ireland could earn a “staggering” amount of extra cash by switching accounts, Bonkers.ie has said.
Many people let their savings accumulate in a current account when they could earn much more in interest if they transferred the money to a savings account.
Speaking to Newstalk Breakfast, Bonkers.ie CEO David Kerr urged people to be more proactive with their finances.
“Savers are leaving their money in accounts that earn them zero interest or effectively zero interest,” he said.
“We’re very quick to, in the cost of living crisis, point to various areas of our personal household budgets and say, ‘We need to save money on this element here or save money on that’.
“But we have collectively over €141 billion that’s earning nothing that we aren’t moving to accounts that are available to use for free that will earn us a staggering €3.5 billion in interest.
“We’re just not doing anything about it.”
High inflation in the eurozone means every year the value of your savings is slowly eroded and your purchasing power is reduced.
Mr Kerr said people need to be “active about managing their money” and investigate which accounts offer the highest interest rate.
“We have choice in the Irish market,” he said.
“We can move to European banks and we could get not [nearly] 3% - which is what Irish banks offer typically for locking your money away for about three years.
“We can earn over 4% by moving to a European bank.”
Although many people might baulk at the idea of opening a bank account overseas, Mr Kerr described it as “quite easy to do”.
“There are some new companies springing up that are deposit brokers,” he said.
“What they do is they offer you a headline rate and they’ll place your money in the most efficient place in Europe.”
The ECB is not expected to reduce interest rates for a “long time” amid continuing concern about inflation.
Main image: Bank notes.