Prices for household energy rose again in April

Prices for household energy rose again in April
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The energy price index (EPI) calculated by the Energy Agency rose by 2.4 percent compared to the previous month and thus had an inflationary effect again. Compared to the same month last year, there was an increase of 14.5 percent, in a two-year comparison – i.e. April 2021 to April 2023 – it was an increase of 60 percent.

Strongest increase in natural gas

Above all, the prices for natural gas rose in a monthly comparison, which at plus 11.1 percent recorded the strongest increase in a monthly comparison since January 2023. In a year-on-year comparison, the increase was 71.9 percent and in a two-year comparison it was even 206 percent – customers had to pay around three times as much for gas in April 2023 as two years ago.

The current jump in gas prices is due to the price adjustments made by large suppliers, which took effect in April. Wholesale prices, on the other hand, are declining, which has brought new cheaper offers onto the market. Price comparisons therefore pay off. “In the current situation, it is extremely important that you know your current contract conditions and compare them with the available offers,” said Karina Knaus from the Energy Agency. “In the current situation, an average household can save a few hundred to a thousand euros a year with little effort.”

When it comes to electricity, the comparison is worthwhile

A comparison is also currently worthwhile when it comes to electricity. “Despite the electricity cost brake, it is important to keep an eye on your current tariff,” says Knaus. Because taxes and duties would continue to affect the actual electricity prices and not the prices subsidized by the federal government. In addition, many households are above the 2,900 kilowatt hour mark, up to which prices are subsidised. “It is important to check discounts and one-off payments carefully and to look at the medium to long-term prices in the contract,” said Knaus. In a monthly comparison, electricity prices increased by 0.3 percent. In a year-on-year comparison, the increase was 5.5 percent, and in a two-year comparison it was 14.7 percent.

The two fuels diesel (plus 3.2 percent) and premium petrol (plus 1.5 percent) have also become more expensive in a monthly comparison. Although both prices fell in a year-on-year comparison (minus 6.2 percent for Super and minus 7.6 percent for Diesel), in a two-year comparison there was a clear increase of 31.2 percent (Super) and 44.5 percent (Diesel).

Heating oil a little cheaper

Heating oil has become somewhat cheaper at minus 3.7 percent compared to the previous month. This means that heating oil was as cheap as it was last in February 2022. There was also a minus of 15.3 percent in a year-on-year comparison, but over a two-year period heating oil is still 69.8 percent more expensive.

Wood pellet prices also fell further. In April, they fell by 7.5 percent on the previous month, after a minus of 16.1 percent in March. For the year as a whole, there is still an increase of 18.8 percent. Compared to other energy sources, pellets are very cheap. In the longer term, however, users of pellet heating systems also had to cope with price increases of 59.8 percent.

Firewood became cheaper by 0.6 percent in April. Year-on-year, the increase was 58 percent. District heating prices remained unchanged month-on-month. On an annual basis, however, district heating remains expensive with a plus of 89.7 percent. Compared to April 2021, prices have more than doubled (plus 121.1 percent).

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