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British Gas price rise to affect pensioners most

Written on:October 12, 2023
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Pensioners to be hardest hit with the British gas price hike

British Gas, Britain’s biggest gas and electricity supplier, is set to announce a fresh round of gas price hikes today, which will see gas prices rise by 6 to 7%, up to £90 this winter. The British gas price rise mostly likely to be effective from next month onward.

The average British Gas dual fuel bill for gas and electricity is £1,240 a year. A 5% British Gas price rise would add around £60 to the bill and a 7% rise would add £90. British Gas is the second largest energy firm to impose price hikes, despite attaining profits by a quarter to £345 million over the first half of this year.

Caroline Flint, the shadow energy and climate change secretary, said, “People will not understand why British Gas are putting prices up, despite their interim financial report showing profits on UK residential customers being up by 23 per cent, compared to the same period last year. Hard-pressed families and businesses need much more transparency on costs, pricing and profits to know whether they’re getting a fair deal.”

While figures from the wholesale market show that the cost of gas and electricity has actually fallen over the last year, experts fear that pensioners will be most affected by the British Gas price rise as they spend a higher proportion of their disposable income on fuel bills.

Vince Smith Hughes, a retirement expert at Prudential said that although older people receive the Winter Fuel Payment from the government, which ranges from £100 to £300, many pensioners’ finances will remain “strained”.

Earlier this month Phil Bentley, the managing director of British Gas, defended 23% rise in British Gas profits to £345 million in H1. “Do you think British Gas’s profits are fair? We make 5p in the pound. We have broadly made that same - dare I say it, small - margin for several years.”

Petrol will now cost 132.18 pence per litre

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