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Title: Competition in decentralized electricity markets : three papers on electricity auctions
Author: Harbord, David William Cameron
Awarding Body: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Current Institution: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Date of Award: 2005
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This thesis consists of three self-contained papers on the analysis of electricity auctions written over a period of twelve years. The first paper models price competition in a decentralized wholesale market for electricity as a first-price, sealed-bid, multi-unit auction. In both the pure and mixed-strategy equilibria of the model, above marginal cost pricing and inefficient despatch of generating units occur. An alternative regulatory pricing rule is considered and it is shown that offering to supply at marginal cost can be induced as a dominant strategy for all firms. The second paper analyses strategic interaction between long-term contracts and price competition in the British electricity wholesale market, and confirms that forward contracts will tend to put downward pressure on spot market prices. A 'strategic commitment' motive for selling forward contracts is also identified: a generator may commit itself to bidding lower prices into the spot market in order to ensure that it will be despatched with its full capacity. The third paper characterizes bidding behavior and market outcomes in uniform and discriminatory electricity auctions. Uniform auctions result in higher average prices than discriminatory auctions, but the ranking in terms of productive efficiency is ambiguous. The comparative effects of other market design features, such as the number of steps in suppliers' bid functions, the duration of bids and the elasticity of demand are analyzed. The paper also clarifies some methodological issues in the analysis of electricity auctions. In particular we show that analogies with continuous share auctions are misplaced so long as firms are restricted to a finite number of bids.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available