Growing numbers of energy customers have switched their electricity and gas deals during the first six months of 2016 according to data from regulator Ofgem. The increase saw a second consecutive six month period where the total number of energy switches was above 3 million, and the figure was almost 1 million higher than the first half of 2015.
The jump in energy switches has been attributed to wider promotion for customers to look for better deals following the publication of the Competition and Market Authority’s (CMA’s) two year investigation into the UK energy sector, despite Ofgem’s negative response to the investigation and report as not being bold enough.
According to the CMA report, two-thirds of households were paying more than necessary for their energy contracts compared to those who had switched to an alternative tariff. Ofgem claim that UK customers could potentially save more than £300 by moving from standard variable tariffs to cheaper deals, often a fixed-term tariff.
To encourage more customers to switch, Ofgem plans to introduce more effective measures on customers’ bills to urge them to compare different tariffs. However, Ofgem has confirmed that it would not be capping standard variable energy tariffs.