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CUB’s monthly analysis: April showers bring falling gas prices

Most natural gas utilities have lowered their rates for April, marking the fourth consecutive month of falling prices. Compared to a year ago, we’re paying less across the board for natural gas.

The price per therm you will pay for natural gas in April, also known as the Purchased Gas Adjustment, or PGA, is shown in the chart below. It includes PGAs from this month, last month and April 2019. Hover your mouse over the graphic to show prices.

Mount Carmel customers will experience the largest rate drop in April, from 21.75 cents to 13.73—a dip of about 8 cents. But Illinois Gas beat out Mount Carmel for lowest rate—11.91 cents per therm—the lowest price per therm so far in 2020.

North Shore Gas fell half a cent, and Peoples Gas dropped about 4 cents, from 21.78 cents per therm last month to 17.88 cents. Ameren’s rate of 30.97 is about 2 cents cheaper than March, and Nicor’s rate, 26 cents per therm, has remained unchanged for four months now, down 11 cents from last April’s price of 37 cents per therm.

Liberty Utilities, a small gas company in southern Illinois, had the only price increase this month: from 28.56 cents per therm in March  to 31.18 cents per therm now. However, that’s still a whopping 54 percent drop from what Liberty customers paid last April.  

In fact every utility in CUB’s review had a lower rate than last April, led by Liberty’s 36-cent drop and a 12-cent drop by Consumers Gas. 

Reminder: You cannot switch to another utility. Utility service territories are geographic: Your utility is determined by where you live. Nicor, Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas customers can switch to alternative suppliers, but that market is plagued by bad deals. Your regulated utility price listed in this article is probably your cheapest option.

Click to view previous monthly analyses: March 2020, February 2020, January 2020, December 2019