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The Nordic Market: Signs of Stress?

Abstract:
The supply shock that hit the Nordic electricity market in 2002-2003 put the market to a severe test. A sharp reduction in inflow to hydro reservoirs during the normally wet months of late autumn pushed electricity prices to unprecedented levels. We take this event as the starting point for analysing some potential weaknesses of the Nordic market. We conclude that fears regarding supply security and adequacy are likely to be unfounded. Nevertheless, as inherited over-capacity is eroded, and new market-based environmental regulation takes effect, tighter market conditions are to be expected. It is then crucial that retail markets are fully developed so as to allow consumers to adequately protect themselves from occurrences of price spikes.

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Energy Specializations: Electricity – Markets and Prices ; Electricity – Policy and Regulation

JEL Codes:
D42 - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design: Monopoly
E60 - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook: General

Keywords: Nordic electricity market, Nord Pool, electricity supply, market power, electricity prices

DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol26-NoSI-4


Published in Volume 26, Special Issue of The Quarterly Journal of the IAEE's Energy Economics Education Foundation.