Electricity market manipulation enforcement actions have moved from conventional analysis of generator market power in real-time physical markets to material allegations of sustained crossproduct price manipulation in forward financial markets. A major challenge is to develop and apply forward market analytical frameworks and models. This task is more difficult than for the real-time market. An adaptation of cross-product manipulation models from cash-settled financial markets provides an existence demonstration under uncertainty and asymmetric information. The implications of this analysis include strong empirical predictions about necessary randomized strategies that are not likely to be observed or sustainable in electricity markets. Absent these randomized strategies and other market imperfections, the means for achieving sustained forward market price manipulation remains unexplained.
Keywords: market manipulation; electricity markets; limits to arbitrage; asymmetric information
Excerpt from the Introduction:
Thank you for the opportunity to participate in this technical conference. My comments here and during the conference are my own and do not represent the opinions of anyone else. The focus of my remarks will be on carbon pricing and the interactions with short-term electricity markets as found in the organized wholesale markets in the United States. I do not address the design and implementation questions focused on investments and resource adequacy that underpin capacity markets.
Excerpt from the introduction:
In a 2019 Issues Paper under its Transmission Pricing Review, the Electricity Authority of New Zealand set out a framework for efficient electricity system investment, cost allocation, and pricing. The basic design accords with beneficiary-pays principles. The challenges of transmission investment preclude pure market approaches and require consistency across both competitive and monopoly elements of the system. In comments on the Authority’s proposal, submissions of some parties include critiques or alternative recommendations that appeal to implicit assumptions inconsistent with the basic requirements of the technology and associated electricity market components. Although perfection is only possible under narrow conditions, the Authority’s framework provides a careful balance that adheres to first principles and can accommodate workable implementation.