Premium bonds: These are March jackpot winning numbers revealed – rates to change soon | Personal Finance

Premium bond winners for March have a huge fund to reap from. The prize fund for March is valued at over £100 million. There have been over 3.5 million winners this month and two people, with drastically different amounts invested, has won the top prize of £1million. A female from Norwich had £50,000 invested and she won one of the top prizes. Her winning bond number was 250KD320334.

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The second winner, a male from Cambridgeshire, had £15,700 invested and he was also a top prize winner. The winning number here was 334AX125846.

While the total holding value were relatively high for both the specific value for the individual winning bonds were dramatically different.

The female’s winning bond had a value of £10,000 but the male’s bond value was a mere £25.

While it is still the case that having more bonds in the prize pool increases chances of winning, this months jackpot winners prove that luck can still greatly benefit some people, even if their holding is low.

READ MORE: Premium Bonds: NS&I reveals £1million jackpot winners must do this

Interest rate changes

Big changes to NS&I interest rates will be made in the coming months (Image: GETTY)

Prizes

The prizes from premium bonds draws can be substantial (Image: GETTY)

The second winner, a male from Cambridgeshire, had £15,700 invested and he was also a top prize winner. The winning number here was 334AX125846.

While the total holding value were relatively high for both the specific value for the individual winning bonds were dramatically different.

The female’s winning bond had a value of £10,000 but the male’s bond value was a mere £25.

While it is still the case that having more bonds in the prize pool increases chances of winning, this months jackpot winners prove that luck can still greatly benefit some people, even if their holding is low.

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Premium bond holders will likely want to keep an eye on their holdings and the prize fund itself as April approaches. 

Currently, the annual prize fund interest rate is 1.4 percent but NS&I have announced that they plan to lower their rates. A problem that Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis says should get savers to look elsewhere. 

This means that effective from May 2020, the prize fund interest rate will be lowered to 1.3 percent.

The odds of winning will also be reduced. The current chances of winning for each £1 bond number are 24,500 to one. However, these odds will change to 26,000 to one from May.

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Many people will likely hold premium bonds purely for the chance to win a prize (Image: GETTY)

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The remaining details for premium bonds will remain unchanged however, all prizes will be given tax free.

The minimum investment will remain £25 and the maximum will be £50,000 per person.

There will still be no notice needed for withdrawing money from NS&I and no penalty will be issued.

Premium bonds will continue to not pay any interest and it will still be possible to check on them online, by phone or through the post.

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Savings

Utilising NS&Is savings accounts could form part of a general savings plan (Image: GETTY)

On top of the premium bond prize draw, NS&I also offer various savings accounts which are also scheduled to have their rates lowered. NS&I offer a direct saver account which currently has an interest rate of one percent AER. From the first of May, this will be lowered to 0.7 percent.

Their income bonds will also have their interest rate lowered to 0.7 percent and their investment accounts will go down to 0.6 percent. However, some accounts appear to remain unchanged. According to their website, NS&I’s direct ISAs rate will remain at 0.9 percent and their Junior ISA will also remain at 3.25 percent.

It should be noted that all of the savings accounts that NS&I offer have variable rates. All of the accounts, baring the ISAs, are also taxable which means that any payments from them are gross. Income tax will be payable on these accounts and the amount of tax paid will be based on the person’s earnings.

Currently, the government detail that £12,500 can be earned as income before any tax is due. Beyond that though, people can be expected to pay 20, 40 or even 45 percent in taxes for any earnings which includes interest rate returns.