It seems that the government’s call for cheaper gas prices hasn’t fallen on deaf ears. A host of suppliers including Eon and First Utility have dropped prices, with SSE being the latest to announce it will cut its domestic gas prices by an average 5.3% on their standard tariff.
This will come into force towards the end of March and should reduce consumers bills by an average of £32 a year.
SSE’s managing director, Will Morris explained: “When we announced our price freeze, we promised that we would not increase prices but would cut them if we could – and that’s exactly what we’ve done. This is our third successive reduction in household gas prices and shows our commitment to getting prices as low as we can and to fight for customers in a fiercely competitive market.
Wholesale energy prices account for an ever-smaller proportion of the bill and there are different cost issues affecting electricity and gas, but I am pleased that we will be able to bring down gas prices three months before our current price freeze is due to end. Price is clearly important to customers but so is customer service and we continue to invest in this area. We’re proud to have a great track record in the industry when it comes to complaints according to Citizens Advice and look forward to driving further improvements in the year ahead.”
It just goes to show that lobbying for fair prices, government pressure and making the public aware can go a long way to changing the energy market. But while this reduction in price is a triumph for consumers, they still need to get pro-active and change their suppliers and tariffs. There are plenty of deals to be had out there if you use a reliable energy broker.
While this is a victory for households, will this new-found generosity spread to business gas prices or will they remain unchanged?
The business gas market changes much sooner than the domestic market due to hedging strategies and the way that energy is bought. Business gas prices have already dropped significantly due to falls in wholesale prices so businesses shouldn’t expect their gas prices to drop any further.
Analysts state that wholesale prices will stabilise now and with growing demand for gas as winter sets in, we’d expect rates to rise as suppliers maximise on demand. We’d advise customers to shop around, lock in their rates to protect their business against future price hikes.
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