Centrica and Shell announce mind-boggling profits
It’s been a few days since British Gas announced another round of energy price rises, with 18% going on to the price of gas and 16% being bunged on to the price of electricity from next month. That could well condemn thousands of customers to a miserable winter of either poverty or hypothermia or maybe even both.
But it’s okay folks, it’s all for a good cause – British Gas’ parent company Centrica has just announced operating profits of £1.3 billion in the six months to June 30th. That’s a drop of 19% on the same period last year, so you can see why they need your gas and electricity cash. They’ve got shareholders to think about!
It’s a tough old spell for British Gas itself – they’ve had a 54% fall in operating profits, chalking up a poxy profit of just £270m in that six-month period. In fact, they’ve even said that they’ve been selling gas at a LOSS since April. The poor wretches! Try to think about what those poor Centrica shareholders are going through when you’re burning your furniture in order to stay alive this winter eh?
It looks increasingly as though more energy price rises are on their way so you might want to consider locking yourself into a fixed rate deal before things get worse. Or just living in one room of your house, in a nest made from straw and wool.
Meanwhile, things are going much more swimmingly at Shell – they’ve announced a 77% rise in their second-quarter profit, thanks to those pesky energy price rises. In the three months leading up to June, they made a profit of $8 billion (£4.9 billion), which we’re sure you’ll agree deserves a round of applause.
Over on Twitter, The Sun’s business reporter Steve Hawkes has been doing some Shell sums and he says: “I make Shell's quarterly profits around £30,799... a minute. Something to think about when you're filling up the car later on.” Indeed...