Market Power and Spatial Arbitrage between Interconnected Gas Hubs
32 Pages Posted: 18 Oct 2016
Date Written: October 15, 2016
This paper examines the efficiency of the arbitrages performed between two regional markets for wholesale natural gas linked by a capacity-constrained pipeline system. We develop a switching regime specification to (i) detect if the observed spatial arbitrages satisfy the integration notion that all arbitrage opportunities between the two markets are being exploited, and (ii) decompose the observed spatial price differences into factors such as transportation costs, transportation bottlenecks, and the oligopolistic behavior of the arbitrageurs. Our framework incorporates a test for the presence of market power and it is thus able to distinguish between the physical and behavioral constraints to marginal cost pricing. We use the case of the “Interconnector” pipeline linking Belgium and the UK as an application. Our empirical findings show that all the arbitrage opportunities between the two zones are being exploited but confirm the presence of market power.
Keywords: Law of One Price, Market Integration, Spatial Equilibrium, Interconnectors, Natural Gas
JEL Classification: D43, F14, F15, L95, Q37
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation