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From frugal Jane to wasteful John: A quantile regression analysis of Swiss households’ electricity demand

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  • Tilov, Ivan
  • Farsi, Mehdi
  • Volland, Benjamin

Abstract

In this article, we investigate the heterogeneity in the responsiveness of Swiss household electricity demand to changes in prices and income. We focus on segments of consumers with different intensities of electricity consumption by using a panel quantile regression approach. This estimation strategy is applied to a rich micro-level longitudinal data set of 3880 observations from more than 1400 households, matched with a unique price data set extracted from the Swiss electricity regulator's online sources. While the findings show an inelastic electricity demand across all groups, an interesting pattern of variation emerges between lower and upper quantiles of electricity demand, respectively frugal and intensive users. Results show that households in the first conditional quartile and at the median react significantly to changes in prices, while those at the lowest quantile and upper quantiles exhibit insignificant price elasticities. The main policy implications of this work concern the design of price-based measures for reducing electricity consumption in the residential sector and the possibility of accounting for individual responses in tailoring policies for specific consumer segments.

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  • Tilov, Ivan & Farsi, Mehdi & Volland, Benjamin, 2020. "From frugal Jane to wasteful John: A quantile regression analysis of Swiss households’ electricity demand," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 138(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:138:y:2020:i:c:s0301421520300082
    DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2020.111246
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Electricity demand; Households; Prices; Quantile regression; Panel data;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Q40 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - General
    • Q41 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Demand and Supply; Prices
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis

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