Association Webinars: Can't Give it Away - Negative Energy Pricing



This IAEE webinar will examine a recent phenomenon caused partly by the Covid-19 Pandemic. In spectacular form, the U.S. oil futures market collapsed on April 20, 2020, sending the prompt futures price to -$37.33 per barrel. That closing price had an impact on physical prices throughout the U.S. and the rest of the world. The natural gas market also experienced negative prices in 2019 and 2020, although less dramatic. Negative prices are more frequent in the electricity market. This is because it is far more costly to store electricity than gas or oil. In addition, a series of regulatory barriers have exacerbated the impact, particularly in the Pacific Northwest.

Negative prices arise when storage is up to the brim and transmission wires and pipelines are congested. This webinar will examine the instances of negative energy prices and the efficiency arguments for allowing or disallowing them.

Seats are limited, sign up to ensure a spot!


Samuel A. Van Vactor has led a firm of consulting economists specializing in energy and natural resource issues for over three decades. He has advised many public and private organizations on economic and energy matters, including the American Petroleum Institute, the U.S. Department of Justice, the Bonneville Power Administration, the California Power Exchange, Pacific Gas & Electric Corporation, Sempra, the Western Interstate Energy Board, Sasol, Tokyo Electric Power Company, the Mitsubishi Research Institute, Tokyo Gas, Gaz de France, Gas Natural, Chevron, Exxon-Mobil, BP, the State of Alaska, and the Government of India. He has appeared as an expert witness in international arbitration, tax hearings, civil disputes, antitrust cases, and regulatory proceedings before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and a variety of State Public Utility Commissions on natural gas and electricity issues. Dr. Van Vactor is the author of An Introduction to the Global Oil & Gas Business, from PennWell Publications.

Before his present activity, Dr. Van Vactor was an officer on destroyers in the U.S. Navy, an economist at the U.S. Treasury, a senior economist at the International Energy Agency of the OECD. He also taught energy economics and/or lectured on energy and economics subjects at the University of Tulsa, University of Oregon, Portland State University, University of Maryland (European Division), Cambridge University, and Columbia University.


Ilia Bouchouev is the former President of Koch Global Partners where he launched and managed global derivatives trading business for over 20 years. Over the years, he introduced several energy derivatives products and was recognized as one of the pioneers in energy options trading.

He is currently managing partner at Pentathlon Investments and adjunct Professor at New York University where he teaches energy trading at Mathematics in Finance Master Program at Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences.

He has a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics and is published in recognized journals on derivatives pricing and energy markets. Dr. Bouchouev serves on the editorial board of Quantitative Finance.

Robert McCullough is Principal of McCullough Research in Portland, OR, and has been in business for twenty five years advising governments, utilities, and First Nations on energy, metals, paper, and chemical issues. He has testified repeatedly in state, federal, and provincial courts as well as before Congress and regulatory bodies. His testimony in front of the Senate Energy Committee is credited with initiating the Enron trading investigations during which he worked for the U.S. Department of Justice and three western attorneys general as well as many civil clients.

He has also worked in market manipulation issues in California (gasoline), Illinois (electricity), Louisiana (electricity), New York (gold and electricity), and Texas (electricity.)

Before starting McCullough Research, Mr. McCullough was an officer at Portland General Corporation where he had responsibilities in finance, power marketing, and rate setting. He was educated at Reed College, Portland State University, and Cornell University in economics and finance. He is a member of the American Economic Association, the American Financial Association, and the Econometric Association. He has also been an adjunct professor/visiting scholar of economics at Portland State University since 1996.

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Event Date: November 8, 2021

Event Time: 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Eastern Time

Topic: Can't Give it Away - Negative Energy Pricing

Moderator: Sam Van Vactor

Speakers: Ilia Bouchouev and Robert McCullough

Price: FREE

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