Energy switching hits record levels
THE number of consumers switching to a new energy supplier rose sharply in the wake of a price increase from British Gas, creating the market’s biggest yearon-year surge last month.
Figures from Energy UK show that nearly half a million customers switched their energy supplier in August, a 30pc jump from the same month last year. The record rise brings the number of switches this year to 3.5 million, more than the number of switches during 2014.
The figures underline the challenge facing the incumbent energy supply giants as they struggle against rising competition. “The UK energy industry is changing, and at a rapid pace,” said Lawrence Slade, of Energy UK. “There are a record number of companies to choose from, and deals which could save you hundreds of pounds.”
The boom in customers shopping around follows a 12.5pc price increase by Britain’s largest energy supplier. British Gas held off on raising prices earlier this year while many of its Big Six peers passed on rising costs to customers. But its Aug 1 price announcement is likely to have opened the gates to a deluge of switching.
It may also boost switching figures in September as customers scramble to avoid the increase due to come into effect this Friday. Energy UK data show that the vast majority of switches were away from larger suppliers.