More bad news for New England electric customers who continue to buy their power supply from the local utility, instead of purchasing their power from a competing electric supplier. NSTAR, Connecticut Light & Power, and United Illuminating have officially announced expected large increases in their electric rate for residential and commercial customers.

At NSTAR, which serves over 1 million customers in Eastern and Central Massachusetts, including Boston, the residential electric supply rate is increasing 60% to 14.972¢/kWh for a six-month period starting January 1, 2015. NSTAR's current residential electric rate is 9.379¢/kWh.

NSTAR's fixed commercial electric rate is also jumping 60% to 14.427¢/kWh effective January 1, from the current 9.078¢/kWh.  Commercial customers on NSTAR's monthly variable electric supply rate will see rates hit 22¢/kWh for January and February.

NSTAR's default industrial electric rates vary by month and the part of the state in which the customer is located, but generally will be about 23¢/kWh for January and February, and 14¢/kWh for March. The current NSTAR industrial electric rate is about 9¢/kWh.

At Connecticut Light & Power, which serves the vast majority of Connecticut, the residential electric rate will increase about 25% to 12.629¢/kWh, from the current 9.99¢/kWh, starting January 1, 2015, and to be in effect for a six-month period.

CL&P's commercial electric rates vary with specific customer rate class, but will generally increase 25% on January 1 to a range of about 12¢/kWh to 14¢/kWh.

Rates for very large businesses at CL&P (over 500 kW) will increase to about 20¢/kWh for January and February, and 12¢/kWh for March, from the current 9¢/kWh.

At United Illuminating, which serves Southwest Connecticut, the residential electric rate will increase more than 50% to over 13¢/kWh, from the current 8.6¢/kWh, starting January 1, 2015, and to be in effect for a six-month period (UI's rates as listed here exclude the negligible impact of the bypassable Federally Mandated Congestion Charge).

UI's commercial electric rates vary with specific customer rate class, but will generally increase 40% on January 1 to a range of about 12¢/kWh to 15¢/kWh.

Rates for very large businesses at UI (over 500 kW) will increase to about 25¢/kWh for January and February, and 15¢/kWh for March, from the current 9¢/kWh.

The electric rates listed above are just for the supply portion of the customer's electric bill.  With the competition that has been introduced into the New England electric market, customers can now choose among competing electric suppliers offering lower rates, and do not have to buy their power supply from their local utility such as NSTAR or CL&P.