Thursday 23 January 2014 8:45 pm

SSE earnings to rise 8.8pc after energy bill hike

BIG SIX energy supplier SSE yesterday said it expects profits to rise to £1.54bn this year, just two months after increasing bills by 8.2 per cent.This equates to an 8.8 per cent jump in pre-tax profits, despite SSE losing 250,000 customers in the last nine months of 2013.The FTSE 100 firm raised its prices in November, adding £104 to the average annual bill.Since then, the government said it would shift some green levies away from energy bills and into general taxation. SSE has been one of the slowest firms to pass savings on to customers – bills are going down on 24 March.It said yesterday that it would cap prices at their new level until at least the spring of 2015.SSE also said in yesterday’s statement that it would be investing less over the next five years.An SSE spokesperson attributed this to “uncertainty in the underlying [regulatory] framework”.The company said that it is reviewing its offshore wind development portfolio after two of its projects missed out on government funding and will report its decision at the end of the financial year.Shares rose 0.23 per cent yesterday.