Brit households face energy bill blow with rise to £2,800 a year in October

Brits struggling with the cost of living crisis face another body blow as energy bills face another hike to £2,800 in October.

The increase will be the second huge rise this year after the cap rose to £1,971 on 1 April, from £1,277 on average per household.

With this increase of more than £800, hot on the heels of the April's £700 top up, households will be paying more than double the fuel costs they paid this time last year.

Ofgem boss Jonathan Brearley has told the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee that it is expecting an energy price cap in October “in the region of £2,800”.

"I am afraid to say conditions have worsened in the global gas market since Russia ’s invasion of Ukraine. Gas prices are higher and highly volatile," he told the committee.

"At times they have now reached over 10 times their normal level.

"I know this is a very distressing time for customers but I do need to be clear with this committee, with customers and with the government about the likely price implications for October.

“Therefore later today I will be writing to the Chancellor to give him our latest estimates of the price cap uplift."

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“This is uncertain, we are only part way through the price cap window, but we are expecting a price cap in October in the region of £2,800.”

The energy price cap is in place to limit how much suppliers can charge for default dual fuel tariffs in order to protect customers from sky-high bills.

But it's mainly based on the price of wholesale energy and supplier costs.

Those have soared in recent months, meaning households are facing huge gas and electricity bills.

Rising wholesale gas prices impacted by the pandemic, lack of supply and ongoing conflict overseas, have been blamed for the cap increasing.

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The Ofgem chief executive said energy prices could go up even further up if Russia further disrupted gas supplies amid the ongoing conflict.

Mr Brearley said: “The price changes we have seen in the gas market are genuinely a once-in-a-generation event not seen since the oil crisis of the 1970s.

“In any conceivable circumstances there would have been supplier failure.

“However, it is clear to me and it is clear to the current Ofgem board that, looking over all of our institution’s history, had financial controls been in place sooner we’d have likely seen fewer suppliers exit the market, and for that on behalf of Ofgem and its board I would like to apologise.”

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Meanwhile, the energy regulator has said the price cap could soon be reviewed more frequently as well.

Instead of every six months, as is the current practice, we could get new figures every three.

If then, the price cap is reviewed four times a year, instead of twice, it could mean that households see less dramatic changes in their bills each time.

Experts are also hopeful that prices won't keep rising for much longer, and expect the price cap to fall when it is reviewed next April.

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