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A fundamental power price model with oligopolistic competition representation

Vazquez, Miguel and Barquín, Julián (2009): A fundamental power price model with oligopolistic competition representation.

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Abstract

Most popular approaches for modeling electricity prices rely at present on microeconomics rationale. They aim to study the interaction between decisions of agents in the market, and usually represent the impact of uncertainty in such decisions in a simplified way. The usual methodology of microeconomics models is the study of the interaction between the profit-maximization problems faced by each of the firms. On the other hand, there is a growing literature that describes the power price dynamics from the financial standpoint, through the statement of a more or less complex stochastic process. However, this theoretical framework is based on the assumption of perfect competition, and therefore the stochastic process may not capture important features of price dynamics. In this paper, we suggest a mixed approach, in the sense that the price is thought of as the composition of a long-term component, where the strategic behavior is represented, and a short-term source of uncertainty that agents cannot take into account when deciding their strategies. The complex distributional implications of the oligopolistic behavior of market players are then given by the long-term-component dynamics, whereas the short-term component captures the uncertainty related to the operation of power systems. In addition, this modeling approach allows for a direct description of the long-term volatility of power markets, which is usually hard to estimate through statistical models.

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