As the ‘big six’ energy companies look set to raise prices across the board, one of the smaller suppliers, Good Energy, has pledged to keep electricity prices the same until 2012.
Which? research shows that rising energy prices are consumers’ number one financial concern. Good Energy, which has around 26,000 electricity customers in the UK, says that it is working hard to improve its competitiveness in the energy market by freezing its energy prices until 2012.
James Tallack, policy adviser at Which? said: ‘Good Energy’s commitment to renewable electricity does mean it’s one of the pricier energy suppliers. Nonetheless, ahead of what’s shaping up to be an expensive winter for energy customers, we welcome the decision to pass efficiency savings through to its customers – that’s how a competitive market should work.’
Juliet Davenport, founder and chief executive of Good Energy, explained that the company has been able to hold its prices partly due to improvements in weather forecasting allowing it to trade renewable energy more efficiently.
‘Big six’ hike energy prices
The energy market is currently dominated by the ‘big six’ energy firms. Three of the six have raised gas and electricity prices over the past few weeks:
- Scottish Power was the first to announce price rises of 19% for gas and 10% for electricity.
- On 8 July British Gas announced an 18% increase in gas and a 16% increase in electricity.
- Scottish and Southern followed suit with rises of 18% for gas and 11% for electricity.
Scottish Power said that the increase was due to a rise in wholesale gas prices, and Ian Peters, chief operating officer for British Gas said: ‘Unless there is a fundamental shift in the way the commodity markets are going to play out in the next few weeks then, on the balance of probability, we will reluctantly put the price up.’
Pending price announcements
The other larger energy companies – npower, EDF and E.on are expected to raise their prices in line with the ‘big six’.
James Tallack said: ‘We now wait to see whether any of the big suppliers yet to make their price announcements will also do something similar to help their hard-pressed customers over the next few months.’
Honesty on energy prices
Which? is calling for energy companies to make energy tariffs clearer and more transparent. Even if wholesale prices do increase, with simple tariffs, customers can more easily compare prices and switch.
We’re asking the government to help increase competition in the energy market – by clearing the way for new suppliers, they could increase competition and potentially drive improvements in services and lower prices.
Lower your gas and electricity bills
You can compare energy prices and switch to a new gas and electricity supplier on Which? Switch. People who switched with us between 1 October and 31 December 2013 are predicted to save an average of £234 a year on their bills.
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