Later today, Energy Secretary Ed Davey will finally tell us what the PM’s "we’ll force companies to switch you to the cheapest tariff" actually means.
I wanted to write a blog on my thoughts on what it means for the energy maket, based on what seems to have come out so far.
Yet truth be told it’s Tuesday, which means I’m snowed under writing my Martin’s Money Tips email. Luckily, I’ve been tweeting and it occured to me that compiled, the tweets tell a short, sharp story of their own.
My tweets (follow me live via @MartinSLewis):
Energy changes won’t mean an ‘end to switching’, even if you are put on cheapest tariff, it’ll only be that firm’s cheapest, not the market’s cheapest."
Energy changes will see tariff homogenisation. Cheapest ones will rise, costliest ones will fall. Switchers lose out, non-switchers gain."
Energy market’s like a regressive tax on those without financial confidence & skill – a struggling 80yr old pays more than me to boil water!"
Please don’t let today’s energy announcement stop you sorting bills NOW. It’s a proposal, that if happens, will likely take years."
What I’d really like to hear on energy is ‘we’re legislating that when you switch, firms must stick to the price promised for 6 months’."
Even with energy tariff simplificiation, without hard price regulations, it doesn’t actually mean people will gain."
In summary to my morning’s tweets. Energy privatisation and competition has failed from a consumer perspective. It’s broken and needs fixing."
Don’t wait for the government – many are overpaying £300 a year NOW on energy bills. Easy info to fix this here."
A few selected replies:
@alistair_a: "It will be a nonsense rule, will come in after lots of haggling and no monitoring of lowest price means all go up."
@Stu_H: "Guess this is the downside of one tariff though. No ultra cheap tariffs to lure customers in?"
@TimProbert: "Something’s’ gone badly wrong with competition if ‘King of Switching’ Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis has called for ‘hard price regulation’." @MartynWilliams2: “@TimProbert while @MartinSLewis has always advised how to save money under current system, he has also criticised it for failing the vulnerable."
@trainerdave121: "I agree with your comments but for many it is the first step in the right direction again. Should we re-nationalise?"
@AuntieNoo: "The problem with energy is that you can’t buy it ‘off a shelf’ anywhere. Privatisation only works where info available in all places."
@ElGreenery: "I don’t think it’s fair. This isn’t the answer. RT @MartinSLewis: Switchers lose out, non-switchers gain."
@Not2earlyNicky: "Heat & light should be not for profit. How do shareholders sleep at night knowing elderly scared to heat homes? #immoral."
@BenBirchallCom: “No, everyone loses as CHOICE is withdrawn from the end user and Government DICTATE what is legally available."
@millenium_chick: "My nan and g’dad are terrified, they are both 65+, still work part time, but will sit in the cold all evening #bigbadbillfear."
@ricklecoat: "Aren’t cheap tariffs typically subsidised by the more expensive ones? If so, how can a ‘cheapest for all’ system work?"
@chickles13: “I think it’s great that they’re putting everyone on cheapest tariff, but won’t they then just increase the cheapest?"
I’d love to know your thoughts…