Number of the Day:

April 10, 2012 | Number of The Day

About 11 percent of New Jersey’s residential energy customers have switched to competitive retail providers for electricity, representing a huge jump from 2010 when little more than 1 percent of the state’s residential electricity was purchased from third-party suppliers.

Businesses that typically purchase more than 500 kilowatts per month — large energy customers — have been turning to third party suppliers for several years, but it’s only in the past year or so that a significant number of residential and small business customers have considered buying electricity from any entity other than their local utility.

Overall, 12.4 percent of New Jersey energy customers use third-party suppliers, which is less than an estimated 18 percent nationwide, according to a recent report by the Compete Coalition. The coalition is a national group of third party energy suppliers. They note that 18 percent is particularly significant because only 18 jurisdictions, New Jersey being one, have deregulated the industry and allow for retail energy choice.