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Product Updates

April 10, 2024

Product Update: New Bond Funds, Faster Deposit Times and Smart Saver is Here

The theme of today’s update is all about speed – with deposit times to the Kernel wallet, and the introduction of a new savings account (minus the 34-day notice period!).

A thread of feedback from new and existing customers (that’s you!) has been that you would like to see your money moving faster, to and from the Kernel wallet, to then start saving or investing.

So, we’ve been busy behind the scenes working to improve the former; the time it takes to deposit money from your bank account to your Kernel wallet. We’re also working on the latter, more to come on this in our next product update.

And, how well timed alongside launching a new savings account designed to give you faster access to your money, when you need it.

More on this below 👇

Faster deposit times, coming soon

Currently it takes 1-2 business days to deposit money into your Kernel wallet. You will soon be able to deposit money from your bank account (including your unique reference code) and the money should be in your Kernel wallet within 2 hours.*

How would this look in practice?

Let’s use a couple of examples to illustrate:

If you were to make a deposit at 6pm on Sunday (ensuring it’s from your nominated bank account and includes a correct reference), it should be in your Kernel wallet by 8pm that same day.

Similarly, if you were to make a deposit at 8am on a Monday (ensuring from a nominated bank account and a correct reference), the money should be available by 10am and well in time to invest prior to our midday cut off.

When (and why) might my deposit be delayed?

There are a couple of reasons your deposit could be delayed; if it’s your very first deposit to Kernel, we may need to do some extra checks before the funds can be cleared.

Or if, surprise, surprise, you make a deposit from a different or unusual bank account and/or without your unique reference code, it will be delayed. In these instances, standard processing times of 1-2 business days may apply.

*This is subject to normal bank processing times; which are typically from 9AM to 10PM daily. Each bank has its own specific processing times, including whether they operate on public holidays or not, so be sure to check these details with your existing bank. In exceptional circumstances, system outages or regulatory compliance checks may also lead to delays.

Start depositing now.

Introducing our new savings account: Smart Saver

Now live, we’re excited to share the details of our new online savings account.

Designed with flexibility, security, and a competitive interest rate in mind, it can be a great place to park your short-term savings or emergency fund.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • A competitive interest rate: Enjoy a 4.80%* interest rate on your savings.

  • Increased flexibility: Withdraw your money from the account to your bank within just 2 business days. And we are working on functionality to make this same day!

  • Security: Rest assured; your money will be held with a NZ registered bank with an investment grade credit rating.

  • No transaction or account fees: Transfer money to and from your account with no associated costs.

*Interest rate is subject to change.

The finer details of the account

The Smart Saver account is not a Portfolio Investment Entity (PIE) investment. Any interest earned on the account will be charged at your Resident Withholding Tax (RWT) rate.

Interest will be calculated on your daily available balance and paid monthly, at the start of the month following. The interest rate for Smart Saver will be shown under the account information, housed under the 'Save' tab in the Kernel platform main menu.

You can read more, including how to use a Smart Saver account, in our FAQs here.

Bond funds join the Kernel fund range

Talk about speed...our operations team have been busy behind the scenes adding four new bond funds to our fund range – three NZ and one US bond fund. These funds are now available for investment through the Kernel platform.

Broadening out our fixed interest fund offering, these funds offer investors a way to diversify across a range of bonds and as a PIE have a maximum tax rate of 28%, according to your Prescribed Investor Rate (PIR). They can also act as a great way to balance out market volatility.

What are the funds?

Added to the fund range are the NZ Bond Fund, March 2027 NZ Bond Fund, March 2029 NZ Bond Fund, and the US Bond Fund.

Whilst all offering something slightly different, our two maturity date funds (March 2027 & March 2029 Bond Funds) are NZ-firsts and ideal for investors looking for a predictable and finite time horizon when investing in bonds.

Historically there has been a high barrier to entry when investing in direct bonds, so with a minimum investment threshold of just $1, we're excited to make investing in this asset class accessible for everyday investors.

To read more about why investing in bonds could be a good idea, check out our blog. Otherwise, learn more about the funds here.

Did you know you can ‘appify’ your Kernel web browser?

Whilst we don’t currently have a dedicated app, an easy way to log into your Kernel account or save/invest using your phone (outside of a web browser!) is to add said web page to your home screen; in turn, making it an app. Sounds confusing, but it’s easy in practise.

You can do this by following these steps:

  1. Open a safari browser on your iPhone and log into Kernel.

  2. Select the "share" icon in the menu bar at the bottom of the screen.

  3. Scroll down to find the option "Add to Home Screen", then select this option

  4. Follow the prompts from here, and you’ll see the app on your phone.

Note: these instructions are primarily for iPhone users, Android users can watch this video to learn more. Read our FAQ to find out more.

And that’s a wrap from us. As always, if you have any product feedback, questions, or just want to share how much you love Kernel 😉, feel free to email our team at We’d love to hear from you.

Armin Svoboda

Armin Svoboda

Head of Product



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Indices provided by: S&P Dow Jones Indices