Co-op Energy plans to cut power bills by 2 per cent

Co-op Energy, which has 60,000 customers nationwide, will cut its electricity price by 2 per cent next month, making its average annual dual-fuel bill £178 cheaper than those of its rivals.

Most of the "Big Six" suppliers are about to increase average bills by about £100 a year. British Gas's 15 million customers will pay 6 per cent more from today. Npower will raise its prices by 9 per cent on 26 November, followed in early December by EDF (10.8 per cent) and ScottishPower (7 per cent).

Scottish & Southern, which reported a 38 per cent rise in half-yearly-profits this week, introduced a 9 per cent rise last month.

Co-op Energy, set up 18 months ago, is publicly committed to avoiding price rises this winter. From 21 December its average annual dual-fuel bill will be £1,157; the Big Six will average £1,135.

Nigel Mason, Co-op Energy's business development manager, said: "Unlike our competitors, we are not driven by a need to make profits for external stakeholders and we pledge to offer a fair and transparent price for all our customers."

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