SSE moves to cut dual fuel prices

Energy firm SSE became the latest firm to announce savings from the Government's green levy shake-up with plans to cut dual fuel prices by 3.5% from March 24.

Energy firm SSE became the latest firm to announce savings from the Government's green levy shake-up with plans to cut dual fuel prices by 3.5% from March 24.

The bill reduction will apply to all SSE's 9.5 million residential customers, including those on fixed or capped deals.

But it will only scale back the 8.2% average tariff hike that kicked in on November 15 and will also take effect nearly three months after rival British Gas dropped prices in response to the Government's move to cut the cost of green levies on customer bills.

SSE's announcement follows ScottishPower's decision yesterday to reduce dual-fuel prices by 3.3% from January 31.

Npower is now the only "big six" provider not to reveal price changes following the green levy deal, although it has already pledged to cut prices.

Labour last week called on ScottishPower, npower and SSE to immediately reduce prices for households after the Government said it would cut the cost of the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) and asked electricity distribution companies to take action to reduce network costs.

British Gas has already reduced prices, announcing in early December that it would lower bills by 3.2% on New Year's Day, effectively reducing hikes that saw prices go up by 10.4% for electricity and 8.4% for gas in November.

EDF and E.ON took the levy changes into account in the recent round of price rises, increasing tariffs on average by 3.9% and 3.7% respectively - far less than the increases announced by rivals.

But SSE's delay comes as it said it was not expecting the ECO savings to start coming through until April.

As with other suppliers, it will also hand a £12 rebate to all electricity customers for the Warm Home Discount, which will be funded through general taxation, which together with the price cut will shave around £50 off the average annual dual fuel bill, to £1,174.

SSE said it will cap prices at the new, lower level until Spring 2015, as long as there are no major increases in wholesale energy costs, network or policy costs.