A host of new utilities surcharges may have a more altruistic bent while benefiting related exchange traded funds (ETFs).

Three of California’s largest utility companies are proposing a change in surcharge to be directed away from business customers and be given to residential customers instead.

Southern California Gas Co., San Diego Gas & Electric Co. and Pacific Gas & Electric Co. want to shift $90 million in fees paid each year onto residences, with the fees mostly going toward low-income people heating their homes, reports David Lazarus for The LA Times. The utilities serve more than 10 million natural gas consumers.

These fees are shared equally among businesses and private household residences as of now, and it is making it too costly to conduct business in California for some companies. The goal is to keep the companies domiciled here in California, instead of packing up and moving to another state where it is less expensive to do business.

The proposal is still just that, and it will go before the California Public Utilities Commission next month.

  • Utilities Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLU), down 30.1% year-to-date; PG&E Corp. 4.1%; Edison 3.6%

Utility ETFs

  • iShares Dow Jones U.S. Utilities Sector (IDU), down 33% year-to-date; PG&E Corp. 3%; Edison 2.5%

Utility ETFs

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