With the deposit interest rate capped at 9 percent a year, many commercial banks have managed to offer higher rates of between 11 – 12 percent to customers by issuing scratch cards for cash gifts.
Thanh, a resident of HCM City’s Phu Nhuan District, said she was told by a banker via a marketing phone call that Vietbank is offering a promotional programme for its depositors.
Any customer who deposits VND30 million for a one-month term will be given a scratch ticket with a 100 percent chance to win a prize.
Cash prizes range from VND50,000 to VND100 million, and the maximum interest rate is offered at 10 – 11 percent, while on the paper it is only written at 8.9 percent, as per law.
If customers are not interested in scratching the cards, they can choose to receive gifts.
Tin, a depositor hailing from Go Vap District, said a bank in District 5 has been mobilising deposit interest rates at 12 percent a year for savings with a one-month term. The disparity is secretly paid and leaves no record in the saving books, said Tin.
The chair of a major bank, who asked not to be named, admitted that the real deposit rate being offered in the banking system has been increased to 11 – 12 percent a year.
As of the beginning of this month, Vietcombank hiked its rate for savings of a 12-month term and above from 9.5 to 10 percent, while those of terms below 12 months are maintained within the 9 percent ceiling.
Eximbank offers rates of 10.8 percent a year for deposits of a term between 12 and 13 months, and a promotional programme in which customers can draw lots to win monthly prizes.