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INEFFICIENCIES AND MARKET POWER IN FINANCIAL ARBITRAGE: A STUDY OF CALIFORNIA'S ELECTRICITY MARKETS -super-

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  • SEVERIN BORENSTEIN
  • JAMES BUSHNELL
  • CHRISTOPHER R. KNITTEL
  • CATHERINE WOLFRAM

Abstract

For two years prior to the collapse of California's restructured electricity market, power traded in both a forward and a spot market for delivery at the same times and locations. Nonetheless, prices in the two markets often differed in significant and predictable ways. This apparent inefficiency persisted, we argue, because most firms believed that trading on inter-market price differences would yield regulatory penalties. For the few firms that did make such trades, it was not profit-maximizing to eliminate the price differences entirely. Skyrocketing prices in 2000 changed the major buyers' (utilities') incentives and exacerbated the price differentials between the markets. Copyright 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. and the Editorial Board of The Journal of Industrial Economics.

Suggested Citation

  • Severin Borenstein & James Bushnell & Christopher R. Knittel & Catherine Wolfram, 2008. "INEFFICIENCIES AND MARKET POWER IN FINANCIAL ARBITRAGE: A STUDY OF CALIFORNIA'S ELECTRICITY MARKETS -super-," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(2), pages 347-378, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jindec:v:56:y:2008:i:2:p:347-378
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Dressler, Luisa, 2016. "Support schemes for renewable electricity in the European Union: Producer strategies and competition," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 186-196.
    2. Paschmann, Martin, 2017. "Economic Analysis of Price Premiums in the Presence of Non-convexities - Evidence from German Electricity Markets," EWI Working Papers 2017-12, Energiewirtschaftliches Institut an der Universitaet zu Koeln (EWI).
    3. Zhao, Huan, 2011. "Four Market Studies for the Beef and Electric Power Industries," ISU General Staff Papers 201101010800001360, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    4. Chiara Lo Prete and Benjamin F. Hobbs, 2015. "Market power in power markets: an analysis of residual demand curves in Californias day-ahead energy market (1998-2000)," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2).
    5. Bunn, Derek W. & Oliveira, Fernando S., 2016. "Dynamic capacity planning using strategic slack valuation," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 253(1), pages 40-50.
    6. Orea, Luis & Steinbuks, Jevgenijs, 2012. "Estimating Market Power in Homogenous Product Markets Using a Composed Error Model: Application to the California Electricity Market," Efficiency Series Papers 2012/02, University of Oviedo, Department of Economics, Oviedo Efficiency Group (OEG).
    7. Peña, Juan Ignacio & Rodriguez, Rosa, 2016. "Time-zero efficiency of European power derivatives markets," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 253-268.

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