ConEdison Solutions today became the latest electric provider to enter the burgeoning retail market in PPL Utilities territory, where rate caps are expiring at the end of the month.

The Allentown utility's rates will increase by about 30 percent on Jan. 1, and ConEdison became the third licensed competitor to offer discounts from PPL's "provider of last resort" rate. ConEdison said its residential and small business rates are up to 13 percent less for customers who sign up for a year.

In the newly deregulated electric market, PPL suggests customers consult the Pennsylvania Office of the Consumer Advocate at http://go.philly.com/PAconsumer

Rate caps for Peco Energy customers won't expire until the end of 2010.