Mar. 27, 2014, 9:46 AM
- Ofgem, the U.K.'s electricity and gas markets regulator, is asking the country's competition authority to investigate the energy sector amid heavy political criticism of rising domestic fuel bills.
- Profits at the U.K.'s biggest six utilities including Centrica (CPYYF) and SSE (SSEZF) have climbed to £1.1B in 2012, nearly 5x higher than 2009, Ofgem says, "with no clear evidence of suppliers becoming more efficient in reducing their own costs."
- Ofgem says the review also should consider whether big utilities' power generation and distribution arms should be separated.
Feb. 10, 2014, 8:19 AM
- Centrica (CPYYF, CPYYY) -3% in London trading after U.K. energy minister Ed Davey singles out the British Gas owner in the government's announcement that it is reviewing how the country's biggest utilities supply natural gas to households, threatening to break up any company it determines is wielding monopolistic powers.
- British Gas has the largest share of the U.K. domestic supply market and, according to Davey, has charged households among the highest prices during the past three years while being on average the most profitable energy provider.
- SSE (SSEZY, SSEZF), another of the "big six" utilities which dominate the British market, are down more than 1%.
Nov. 29, 2013, 1:35 PM
- The U.K. government has asked the country's six biggest energy suppliers to freeze prices for gas and electricity, barring any major increase in wholesale fuel costs, until the 2015 election, BBC reports.
- The government seeks the commitment as part of a wider deal with firms that could cut annual bills by ~£50, and it wants to avoid another round of price rises that could be blamed on government green levies.
- Britain's "big six" energy companies, British Gas owner Centrica (CPYYF, CPYYY), SSE (SSEZF, SSEZY), RWE's npower (RWEOY), Iberdrola's Scottish Power (IBDRY, IBDSF), EDF Energy and Eon (EONGY), supply ~98% of the country's homes.
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