A foreign currency time deposit or fixed deposit is a time deposit account that is denominated in a currency other than the Singapore Dollar.
▪ Gives you exposure to your chosen foreign currency and allows you to earn potentially higher rates compared to S$ deposits.
▪ Allows you to diversify your investment portfolio.
▪ Overdraft facility may also be provided against the foreign currency time deposit.
▪ Most banks offering foreign currency fixed deposits also allow you to set maturity instructions. This includes renewing the principal along with the interest, withdrawing the principal and the interest and renewing the principal while withdrawing the interest.
A Few Important Features
▪ Initial deposit requirement may vary based on currency chosen. Interest rates may also vary depending upon the currency and tenor chosen.
▪ Tenors available: this generally varies from one day (e.g. Fixed Deposit – Foreign Currency Account from POSB Bank) to one week to 12 months. However, the Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit from RHB Bank is available in a tenor range of one week to 24 months.
No PDIC Protection – It is important to remember that foreign currency deposits are amongst the group of products that are not covered by PDIC protection.
Eligibility and opening requirements
You should either be a Singapore citizen or a Singapore permanent resident. You should be at least 18 years old. Some banks (e.g. POSB) allow customers who are less than 12 years old to open a foreign currency time deposit via a trust minor account with a parent or legal guardian who is at least 21 years old. Many banks offering foreign currency time deposits accounts also offer these products to foreigners.
Document Requirements (in general; specific requirements may vary from bank to bank):
- Singapore Citizens and Singapore Permanent Residents –
- NRIC (front and back)
- Income documents:
- Salaried employees: Last three months’ computerised payslips from current employer
- Self-employed: Latest Income Tax Notice of Assessment
▪ Employment Pass issued by the Immigration and Checkpoint Authority of Singapore
▪ Any of the following documents (as address proof; should be within the last 3 months):
▫ Last 3 months’ utility bill
▫ Last 3 months’ bank statement
▫ Letter from the human resource department of current employer stating address
▫ Government-issued documents stating address (e.g. IRAS, CPF, ICA)
▫ Telecom bill
▫ Tenancy agreement
▫ Management fee bill
▫ Letter from the human resource department of the current employer
Examples of foreign currency time deposit products offered by banks in Singapore:
▪ The Foreign Currency Time Deposit from Citibank (available in 11 currencies)
▪ CIMB Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit Account (available in 7 different currencies)
▪ Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit from UOB (available in 9 currencies)
▪ Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit from RHB Bank (available in 9 currencies)
For instance, the Foreign Currency Time Deposit offered by Standard Chartered Bank is available in ten currencies including USD, GBP, AUD, NZD, EUR, CAD, JPY, HKD, CHF and CNH (Offshore Renminbi). The initial deposit requirement for USD/GBP/AUD/EUR/NZD is 5,000 while it is 25,000 for CAD/HKD/CHF/CNH and 3,000,000 for JPY. It also offers an overdraft facility of up to 90% of the deposit.