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Explaining European Emission Allowance Price Dynamics: Evidence from Phase II

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  • Wilfried Rickels
  • Dennis Görlich
  • Gerrit Oberst

Abstract

In 2005, the European Emission Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) established a new commodity: the right to emit a ton of CO2 (EUA). Since its launch, the corresponding price has shown rather turbulent dynamics, including nervous reactions to policy announcements and a price collapse after a visible over-allocation in Phase I. As a consequence, the question whether fundamental factors (fossil fuel prices, economic activity, weather) affect the EUA price remained partially unresolved. Today, being halfway through Phase II (2008–2012) and relying on a more mature market, we use more reliable data to investigate the extent to which allowance price dynamics can be explained by market fundamentals. We empirically test for the influence of fuel prices, economic activity, and weather variations. Fuel prices allow to test for fuel switching from coal to gas, the most important short-term abatement option for most installations in the EU-ETS. The empirical results show a significant influence of gas, coal, and oil prices, of economic activity and of some weather variations. When including the relative price of coal to gas on a forward level, we found evidence of a switching effect. Yet, on a spot level the demand effect seems to dominate. However, when including the absolute coal price the coefficient is positive, contradicting theory with respect to both the switching and the demand effect. The significant weather variations suggest that their influence on EUA prices is less driven by their effect on energy demand but more by their effect on the provision of carbon-free renewable energy. Overall, our results show that the price dynamics are much better explained by a model based on fundamentals than by a purely autoregressive model. However, the results also show that fundamentals alone cannot fully explain price dynamics and that forecasting is improved by the inclusion of time series characteristics

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Kiel Working Papers with number 1650.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kie:kieliw:1650

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Related research

Keywords: Carbon emission trading; EU ETS; Carbon price influence factors; Fuel switching;

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Cited by:
  1. Thoenes, Stefan, 2011. "Understanding the Determinants of Electricity Prices and the Impact of the German Nuclear Moratorium in 2011," EWI Working Papers 2011-6, Energiewirtschaftliches Institut an der Universitaet zu Koeln.
  2. Marc Gronwald & Janina Ketterer & Stefan Trück, 2011. "The Dependence Structure between Carbon Emission Allowances and Financial Markets - A Copula Analysis," CESifo Working Paper Series 3418, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Anna Creti & Pierre-André Jouvet & Valérie Mignon, 2011. "Carbon Price Drivers: Phase I Versus Phase II Equilibrium?," Working Papers 2011-09, CEPII research center.
  4. Claudia Kettner & Daniela Kletzan-Slamanig & Angela Köppl & Thomas Schinko & Andreas Türk, 2011. "ETCLIP – The Challenge of the European Carbon Market: Emission Trading, Carbon Leakage and Instruments to Stabilise the CO2 Price. Price Volatility in Carbon Markets: Why it Matters and How it Can b," WIFO Working Papers 409, WIFO.
  5. Claudia Kettner & Daniela Kletzan-Slamanig & Angela Köppl, 2011. "ETCLIP – The Challenge of the European Carbon Market: Emission Trading, Carbon Leakage and Instruments to Stabilise the CO2 Price. The EU Emission Trading Scheme: Sectoral Allocation Patterns and th," WIFO Working Papers 408, WIFO.
  6. Claudia Kettner & Daniela Kletzan-Slamanig & Angela Köppl, 2013. "The EU Emission Trading Scheme. Sectoral Allocation Patterns and Factors Determining Emission Changes," WIFO Working Papers 444, WIFO.

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