E.On slashes gas prices by more than five per cent as chief executive says it's "the right thing to do"

 
Emma Haslett
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The company said the move was the "right thing to do" (Source: Getty)

Energy giant E.On has announced a decision to slash 5.1 per cent off its gas prices - equivalent to three weeks' gas use, or £32 off your annual bill, it said today.

The company said it was also launching two new dual fuel tariffs, including one aimed at people aged over 60 and one two-year fixed tariff, which it said were among the cheapest available.

The news comes as energy prices continue to fall. Last night oil prices continued to hover around $28 per barrel, with US crude falling as low as $27.55.

But although energy companies hedge their gas prices, meaning they can't react to short-term fluctuations in the market, E.On chief executive Tony Cocker said the change was the "right thing to do".

"While the price we pay for our customers’ energy has fallen, we also have to take account of managing the various other risks in the market which can change, and the fact that many of the other costs that we don’t control but do have to bear have increased or may increase," he said.

"Once you’ve built in various uncertainties and other factors, while the wholesale market movements may translate across to a dual fuel domestic bill for a drop in prices of under 10 per cent, the inclusion of those other factors translates the percentage to the standard gas cut announced today. We will continue to keep all these factors under review.”

But Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at price comparison site Uswitch, called the price cut "underwhelming".

“Consumers have patiently waited for over six months to see another big six price cut so this move, while welcome, is long overdue. Given the fact that wholesale prices are at a five year low, E.On customers may well feel underwhelmed by the size of this cut."

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