‘Big six’ make small price reductions

adminBusiness Electricity, Business Gas, Utilities Market Regulation, Wholesale Utilities Markets

All of the big six energy suppliers have now cut their prices, following electricity and gas price rises in the second part of 2011.

Energy price hikes and cuts

Summary of 2011 energy price rises compared to early 2012 price cuts

All of the largest players in the energy market have now cut their standard domestic tariffs to some extent, but all of them have made reductions that amount to a fraction of the price rises they made in the latter part of 2011.

The reductions have been in the 4-6% region, and only on electricity or gas, when the price rises were mostly around 10-20% and affected both products in all cases.

The price cuts seem more like token gestures to generate publicity and keep watchdogs and the media off the suppliers’ backs, rather than anything significant.

The suppliers will however be keen to prove that they are only passing on wholesale costs to consumers, with Ofgem investigating the big six for generating such large profits.

Supplier by supplier

British Gas (BG) have only reduced their electricity prices and only by 5% after a 16% increase last year (they sell much more gas than electricity). They say they cannot reduce gas prices, which they upped by 18% last summer.

Scottish & Southern Energy (SSE) have reduced their gas prices by 4.5% after hiking them 18% last year. Electricity stays the same after an 11% increase.

Electricité de France (EDF) seems to be trying though – they have reduced gas prices by 5%, after a 15.4% rise. Electricity stays the same after a small 4.5% increase.

E.ON have reduced electricity prices by 6% after an 11.4% rise. Its gas prices stay the same after an 18.1% increase in September 2011.

ScottishPower (SP) reduced their gas prices by 5% after a 19% rise in August, electricity stays the same after a rise of 10%.

Npower (NP) reduced their gas prices by 5% after a 15.7% rise, electricity was only raised by 7.2% but still gets no reduction.

All of the suppliers raised gas prices by about 15-20%, and 4 of them have cut gas prices by around 5%. The other two both cut electricity prices by 5% and 6%, but did not reduce gas at all, which they hiked by 18%.

We reported on each of the price rises as they happened last year:

ScottishPower announce large price risesJun 8th, 2011
British Gas prices raisedJul 11th, 2011
Scottish and Southern raises pricesJul 22nd, 2011
E.ON Energy announces price riseAug 8th, 2011
Npower to increase gas and electricity pricesAug 17th, 2011
EDF Energy announce price risesSep 15th, 2011