Energy bill increased 20% on average; All income groups affected: ABN Amro
Energy bills rose by 20 percent on average in the first three months of this year compared to the same period in 2020, ABN Amro concluded. The increase is about the same for all income groups - lower incomes did not see a higher percentage increase than higher income groups, the bank said, NOS reports.
"The spread is striking. We did not see that the increase is higher for low incomes, which you would expect because they more often live in a rented house and have a variable contract," ABN Amro economist Jeannine van Reeken said to the broadcaster.
Whether people see higher energy prices on their bills depends on the term of their energy contract and whether they pay fixed or variable rates, the bank explained. As a result, there are significant differences between individual households, but not so much between income groups. "It is almost a matter of luck or bad luck whether you run into a higher energy bill or not. People will be confronted with a higher energy bill at different times, but we do not see any difference between income groups," Van Reeken said.
Last week, Statistics Netherlands reported that inflation stood at 12 percent in March, mainly due to energy prices which increased 103 percent compared to a year ago. But according to ABN Amro, households are not immediately feeling the massive energy price increase. Households' average energy bills increased only slightly, from 135 euros in February to 137 euros in March.
But the higher gas prices will slowly filter through to consumers' costs, and purchasing power will decline, especially in the second half of 2022 and 2023, the bank said.