Westpac follows the leaders on high yield accounts

Westpac has become the first big four banks to offer a high yield, at call account. The product, called Max-i Direct, offers a rate of 5.0 per cent for even small balances, and a rate of 5.25 per cent on balances in excess of $500,000. The account has no transaction capability, and if account holders want to tap their funds they must transfer the money into another Westpac bank account. It is not possible to transfer the funds to accounts at other banks. The rate offered by Westpac compares with St George Bank's Direct Saver (5.0 per cent for balances of more than $25,000), Citibank's Online Cash Manager (5.4 per cent), ING Direct's Savings Maximiser (5.25 per cent) and Suncorp Metway's Everyday Options (5.4 per cent).