Restructuring European Electricity Markets – A Panel Data Analysis
Utilities Policy, Vol. 38, February, 2016, pp. 33-42
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This paper looks at the restructuring of European electricity markets that has been underway since the 1990s. The restructuring process, driven largely by EU legislation aiming to create a single market for electricity, has led to significant changes in how electricity markets in member states operate. This research estimates the impact of the restructuring process on electricity prices for industrial consumers. Much of the literature to date estimating the impacts of electricity market restructuring fails to take into account the possible endogeneity of the reform process. The possibility of endogenous reform is important to consider in this context; just as restructuring may affect prices, the decision to restructure may be influenced by prices. By using dynamic panel-data techniques, I aim to overcome this shortcoming. I find that once the endogeneity of reforms is accounted for, restructuring has, as of yet, had no statistically significant impact on electricity prices. This research highlights the importance of accounting for dynamics and possible endogeneity before drawing inferences about the results of EU electricity market reform.