Fixed Rate RSA Retail Savings Bonds

Last updated 3 January 2022
Current Rates

Fixed Rate RSA Retail Savings Bond TermRate % Jan-22Month Change %
2 years5.75 -1.00
3 years7.25 -0.50
5 years9.25 -0.50

December held yet further volatile moves for the Rand and bond yields.  The Rand ended the month weaker by 0.4%, with USDZAR closing the year at 15.93.  Government Bond yields were somewhat mixed across the curve with the short end (2-year) rising 0.1% and longer dated (5-year) bond yields falling by 0.13%.

Given these Government Bond yield changes and general market conditions, the 2-year Fixed RSA Retail Savings Bond rate has dropped by 1.00%, while the 3 and 5-year Fixed RSA Retail Savings Bond rates have dropped by 0.50% for the month of January 2022.

Despite the 0.10% higher 2-year Government Bond yields, the 2-year fixed rate has fallen by 1.00% to the lowest spread since April 2018.

RSB rates remain in line with or better than Bank rates.

Historic Rates

Click on chart to enlarge

Rate Commentary for December 2021

Last updated 3 January 2021
Omicron variant, prolonged global inflation expectations, subsequent central bank hiking and a strong US Dollar is affecting emerging market bond yields.

 

New Covid variants, geopolitical risk and fiscal concerns continue to cause major moves in the local fixed income market.

 

Retail Bonds still offer substantial value over Government Bond yields, with 3 and 5-year spreads wider relative to historical same term Government bond rates.

The monthly change in underlying Government Bond yields is a good proxy, for any RSB rate changes, however, the spread added to Government Bond yields to arrive at RSB rates can adjust to retail market conditions.  RSB rates very remain competitive compared to the Banks.

As depicted in the 5-year Retail Savings Bond Rate versus 5-year Government Bond Rate chart, the 0.13% drop in the 5-year rate with a 0.50% decrease in the RSB rate means the spread over Government bonds narrowed materially to average long term levels, for January 2022.  Be sure to compare the 2-year case where the spread has narrowed to only 0.05%.

Investment rates for new bonds are set by the National Treasury at the start of each month, and are primarily determined based on the levels at which Government Bonds are trading in the capital markets. By keeping an eye how these bond levels have changed over the month, it is possible to get a good idea what changes, if any can be expected in RSB levels. This information is useful in determining whether to buy or re-start now, or hold off in the hope of better levels next month.

For those interested in more detail in the moves of the RSB bonds relative to Government bonds, more detail is below

5-year Retail Savings Bond Rate versus 5-year Government Bond Rate

Click on chart to enlarge

RSA RSB Rates are changed in minimum steps of 0.25%
How do the RSA Retail Bonds rates compare to Bank Deposit rates?

Most Retail Banks are paying less competitive rates compared to RSBs, particularly for longer term fixed deposits.

Given that the RSBs are:

  • a better credit

  • can be re-started should rates go higher, and

  • for the over 60’s can be redeemed reasonably cheaply,

means that they certainly offer great value relative to bank term deposits.

For those able to access these top rates (typically you need to be 60+ and have R100,000 to invest), bank deposits are still worth considering as part of a savings portfolio.

Be sure to visit RateCompare.co.za for an excellent monthly review of all rates offered at most SA Banks.

These rates are ranked: split by investment term, amount invested and age group and include some excellent tools to help compare and improve investment outcomes.

The significant value associated with the re-start option however, means that we continue to favour a larger holding of RSB relative to term bank deposits.
South African Government Bonds

Fixed Rate RSA Retail Savings Bond rates are primarily set off and affected by the yields of Fixed Rate South African Government Bonds traded on capital markets.  General market conditions also affect the final Retail Savings Bond rate offered.

As at 31 December 2021, Government Bond Rates were as follows:

Bond NameTerm to Maturity (Years)Yield %
R20231.165.100
R1864.987.835
R20308.099.335

Interpolating the rates as at 31 December 2021, we obtain 2, 3 and 5-year Government Bond Rates

Interpolated Term (Years)Interpolated Yield %
25.701
36..418
57.847

SA Government Bond yields for the last 12 months.

Click on charts to enlarge

Be sure to check out rbond.co.za for recent SA Government Bond rates and how changes in the current month can be used as a guide to predict the Retail Savings Bond rates next month.  This way one can better time re-starting or leaving bonds that they have had for over a year.

SA Government Bond yields continue recent upward trend with more rate hike expectations being factored into shorter dated bonds, while yields are materially affected by Covid, fiscal and inflation fears

2-Year: SA Government Bond vs RSB yields

3-Year: SA Government Bond vs RSB yields

5-Year: SA Government Bond vs RSB yields

BondClub Market Data

The BondClub Market Data section provides a handy general summary of rates in the SA Retail Savings Market as well as some commentary about it.

Sign up for our Insights and Retail Savings newsletter

We respect your privacy, so will only send you information you request or sign up for.