More than half of households feel high gas prices in their wallets | NOW

More than half of households have had to deal with higher energy bills since August last year. In some cases it is an extra 100 euros per month. This is apparent from an analysis by Rabobank economists who have examined customer transaction data.

At 23 percent of households, the bill was unchanged in May. 19 percent spent less on gas and electricity.

Rabobank compared monthly energy expenditure with expenditure in August 2021, as energy prices have risen sharply since then. “From that moment on, we looked at what is being written off in energy costs. Consumers pay more for gas and light, partly because of the war in Ukraine,” says Rabobank economist Carlijn Prins.

For example, 10 percent of all households saw their energy bill rise by about 10 percent in May. 13 percent faced an increase of more than 50 percent. Nearly 4 percent saw their energy bill more than double.

“The number of households that have to deal with an increase in energy bills has increased faster in recent months than the number of people whose energy bills are falling. The higher energy prices are therefore gradually affecting an increasing proportion of households,” says Prins.

The magnitude of the increases differs greatly. Nearly one in five households (19 percent) saw their monthly energy bill rise by more than 50 euros. At 8 percent, the energy bill even rose by more than 100 euros. There is also a large proportion of households (17 percent) that paid no more than 20 euros extra in May compared to August.

‘Households can still receive substantial additional tax’

“It is also striking that the magnitude of the increases in energy bills this year is greater than in the four previous years,” says Prins. “Where this year 19 percent of all households had to deal with an increase of more than 50 euros in May, this was about 3 percent in May 2021, 2020 and 2018, and about 7 percent in 2019.”

Rabobank has not looked at the annual or final settlements in this analysis. Some households may be faced with significant additional taxes or windfalls due to tax refunds.

“The actual energy consumption also influences the annual bill. A mild winter or energy-saving measures could make a difference. But it is difficult to determine the effect of this, because we do not know how much energy is actually used and what rates people pay. We only see the outcome of those two.”

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