Xcel: heating bill hike not as big as expected | VailDaily.com

Xcel: heating bill hike not as big as expected

DENVER, Colorado ” Xcel Energy customers will see their heating costs increase next month ” but not as much as anticipated.

Xcel Energy estimates customers’ costs will rise by 7 percent to 8 percent in November over the same period a year ago. The utility originally predicted increases of 10 percent to 30 percent.

The increase won’t be as big as anticipated because market prices for natural gas are flat due to high storage levels and lower demand because of the slumping economy.

Xcel Energy says residential natural gas bills in November will average $78, compared with $73 last November. The bill for a typical small business will rise to $344 from $320 last November.

Minneapolis-based Xcel is Colorado’s largest electric utility.

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