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Utility bills could be set to rise

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04/01/2008

Speculation has been mounting over a possible price rise from one of the UK’s big suppliers, according to comparison service uSwitch.

Following npower and British Gas’s recent announcements that they were hiking their prices on market tracker products, in addition to a further increase to npower’s online plan, experts at uSwitch have predicted a 15% rise in utilities from another of the UK’s main suppliers.

Tim Wolfenden, head of home services at uSwitch.com, said: “Until an announcement is made this is not a ‘done deal’. However, price rises have been on the horizon for some time so I don’t think anybody will be particularly surprised by this speculation.”

Although recent price increases have only been on ‘niche’ plans – price plans that only affect a minority of customers – the real crunch will be when one of the suppliers increases the price of their standard plans. According to Wolfendon, as soon as one supplier makes this move, it will give competitors the green light to go ahead with price increases of their own. He said: “This speculation could rapidly turn into price rise misery for consumers in 2008.”

uSwitch.com is an online and telephone-based comparison and switching service, helping consumers compare prices on gas, electricity, water, personal finance products and car insurance.

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