SSE announces gas price cut

February 1, 2016

Lucy_2 (Custom)By Lucy Palmer-Richeson

A second gas company has made a cut in its prices following E.ON’s recent decision to lower its rates after a report by the Competitions and Markets Authority (CMA) found in February 2015 that giant gas companies were overcharging their customers.

SSE, formally known as Scottish and Southern and one of the Big Six energy suppliers, said it would lower its standard gas tariff by 5.3%, a cut which will save an average household £32 a year.
The cut in prices will not take effect until March 29th of this year, leaving the company open to criticism for not making the cut during the winter season when it’s estimated its four million customers use the most energy. E.ON’s customers will benefit from the drop in prices from February.

Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Amber Rudd called the move to cut prices a “step in the right direction” and asked that other providers follow suit and drop their prices.

However, critics said that the decision was not enough, with consumer campaigner Ann Robinson calling it a “token gesture”.

MoneySavingExpert founder Martin Lewis said: “Energy firms must be whooping for joy that they can get away with such small cuts.”

Dermot Nolan, head of the energy regulator Ofgem, said: “If the market is as competitive as suppliers claim we would expect to see further price cuts.

“Ofgem referred the market to the CMA because we feel competition is not bearing down fast or hard enough on consumer’s bills.”

Will Morris, group managing director of retail at SSE, said the group was dedicated to cutting prices in a “fiercely competitive market”.

“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,” he said.