Last week, Bankhaus August Lenz caused a stir with a new call money offer: the Munich bank offered 0.13 percent. At the weekend, the offer was cashed in again after a few days. FOCUS Online asked why.

Overnight interest rates have been close to zero for years. Recently, some German banks no longer paid interest on these savings deposits at all, or at most 0.01 percent: The best interest rates offered by German banks are 0.05 percent per year.

All the more astonishing was an offer from a small Munich institute a little over a week ago. Bankhaus August Lenz, which belongs to the Italian Mediolanum Group, suddenly offered 0.13 percent on call money – without a minimum deposit and up to a sum of 250,000 euros. What made the offer so attractive was not only the interest, but the German deposit insurance.

Like all EU countries, the German state only guarantees credit balances of up to 100,000 euros. But August Lenz is also a member of the deposit insurance for German private banks, which, like savings banks and Volks- und Raffeisenbanks, has an additional deposit insurance fund. This has made the overnight money offer a real alternative for customers who want to protect large balances from penalty interest.

Apparently, the customers recognized this immediately. They almost flooded the small bank with money. The bank does not want to confirm this exactly when asked, but the official answer suggests so. “Bankhaus Lenz wanted to collect a certain amount to compensate for outflows of customer funds in recent months. This amount was won in a much shorter period of time than expected,” says the written statement to FOCUS Online.

The question remains what will happen to the customers who have already registered. At what conditions do their accounts now earn interest? “We have accepted or will accept all customers (funds) who have registered up to the end of the offer,” writes the bank. “The planned amount was slightly exceeded.” The bank does not say how many customers have newly registered.

After all: Those who were quick and have already registered should also get the advertised offer. As announced, call money accounts would bear interest at 0.13 percent, announced August Lenz. The bank is no longer accepting new customers.

If you are looking for a call money account with a similarly high interest rate, you should take a look at the FOCUS Online comparison. The leader there is currently Renault Bank with an interest rate of 0.20 percent per annum. There is no minimum investment amount and the French deposit guarantee applies to deposits of up to 100,000 euros. The French mymoneybank ranks second with 0.18 percent; also without a minimum deposit and with a guarantee of up to 100,000 euros by the French state. Collector Bank from Sweden ranks third with 0.16 percent. Here the minimum deposit is 500 euros, the maximum is 95,000 euros. Deposits up to EUR 100,000 are guaranteed by the Swedish state.

The highest interest overnight money of a German bank currently comes from the Bank of Scotland, IKB and Bank1, each with 0.05 percent.