Gas Market Monitor
Visit CUB's Gas Market Monitor to answer the question:

"Will I save money by switching to an alternative gas supplier?"

This free tool shows you how more than a dozen unregulated suppliers have performed since 2003, compared with the prices of Northern Illinois' regulated utilities—Peoples Gas, North Shore Gas and Nicor Gas.

(Note: We'll send you a follow-up email with an up-to-date list of gas offers in Northern Illinois—and other periodic updates on utility issues important to your bottom line.)
To acccess the Gas Market Monitor, enter your information to begin.

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This analysis is based on data that CUB obtains weekly from suppliers. It includes thousands of active and expired plans. An expired plan is one in which the term has ended. For example, if you signed up in December 2012 for a one-year plan, the analysis of that plan's results would be in the "expired" category, because the term would have ended in December 2013. If, just two years ago you had signed up for a five-year plan, the analysis would be included in the active section and would reflect savings and losses to date.

Month Average Therms
January 250
February 250
March 150
April 100
May 25
June 25
July 25
August 25
September 100
October 150
November 150
December 200
Four types of plans have been offered:

*Variable plan: You pay a per-therm price that can change monthly. Over the course of the year, the Gas Market Monitor counts variable plans as 12 distinct offers, each with a one-year term.

*Fixed rate: You pay a set per-therm price for a term as long as five years. While gas suppliers introduce variable plans at the beginning of a month, they might offer a new fixed-rate plan in the middle or near the end of a month. Regardless of when a fixed-rate plan is first offered, CUB doesn't begin tracking it until the first day of the next month. CUB will continue to track that plan until its term ends.

Two other types of plans are not included in the Gas Market Monitor because they are rare and because they are difficult to track. Mixed plans offer a combination of fixed and variable rates at different times of the year. CUB also excludes offers with custom pricing—charges that differ by individual customer. One example is Nicor Advanced Energy's "Lock 12," which charges you a set monthly bill for a year, depending on your own past usage and other factors—plus a hefty markup. With such atypical plans, it's extremely difficult, if not impossible to make the apples-to-apples comparisons featured in the Gas Market Monitor.

In addition to the per-therm rate, many plans include additional fees, such as a "balancing charge" and a monthly service fee. The "Transportation Service Credit" (for customers of unregulated suppliers in Nicor Gas territory) and the "Hub Credit Gas Charge" (for customers of unregulated suppliers in Peoples Gas territory) also will affect the advertised price. Wherever applicable, the analysis includes those fees and credits. Taxes and other government-mandated surcharges are not included.

CUB estimates a typical yearly usage of 1,325 therms and allocates those therms for each month based on gas-usage data from the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). Actual results will vary based on individual usage.

Because it can sometimes take weeks to obtain accurate and complete pricing information, as of July 2014 the Gas Market Monitor offers a snapshot of plans from the third week of each month. The plans you see here may have changed or been discontinued by the time you read this. CUB's Gas Market Monitor is the most comprehensive analysis of Illinois' natural gas market available, covering thousands of plans that are or have been offered since 2003. Every attempt has been made to verify all the information gathered with the companies listed, and CUB has strived to be conservative and prudent in its methodology. If there is a gap in information, CUB has made every attempt to point that out and compensate for it in its methodology. If you have any questions, please contact CUB, at 1-800-669-5556.