GERMAN POWER: Day-ahead at Jan-high on tight system; curve down
London (Platts)--23Jan2013/824 am EST/1324 GMT
German day-ahead OTC power prices Wednesday reached their highest level
so far this year as below-average temperatures boosted demand, while a
virtual lack of wind and solar output kept supplies tight, although any gains
were capped by the smooth running of conventional power production, a trader
Baseload power for day-ahead delivery was last heard OTC before noon
London time Eur2.50 higher at Eur59.50/MWh, while peakload power was last
heard Eur5.50 higher at Eur74/MWh, the highest closing level since December
13, Platts data shows.
However, Epex Spot settled Thursday below OTC at Eur59.25/MWh for base,
while peakload cleared at Eur70.47/MWh, only the second time this contract
settled above Eur70 this year.
Thursday's most expensive hour on the exchange was again hour 19 at
Eur79.94/MWh, although this was almost 20% below Wednesday's hour 19, which
settled at Eur98.51/MWh.
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"The system in Germany is very tight at the moment, mainly because of
the lack of wind and a couple of megawatts can make a big difference as the
auction shows," a trader said, adding that a 1,000 MW difference in supply or
demand is equivalent to a Eur10 swing in baseload and even Eur20 for peakload
hours in such a tight system.
Wind power generation was forecast to remain below 1 GW for average
baseload hours Thursday with solar output too little to make a difference, a
market source said.
Available plant capacity was slightly higher with EEX transparency
pegging nuclear at its full 12.1 GW, lignite up by 0.3 GW at 19.8 GW and hard
coal unchanged at 15.3 GW for Thursday.
Peak demand was forecast at around 87 GW Thursday, according to a market
Temperatures are forecast to drop even further below the seasonal norm
with CustomWeather pegging Dusseldorf at 10 degrees Celsius below the norm
Thursday and Friday, but rising sharply over the weekend to be in line with
the norm Monday and even 1 C above Tuesday.
Further out on the prompt, week-ahead base eased 75 euro cent to
Eur42.75/MWh, while week 5 peakload shed Eur1.75 to Eur55/MWh as the change
to milder weather next week will be accompanied by strong wind power output,
a trader said.
On the near curve, February base shed 25 euro cent to Eur45/MWh, while
further forward, Cal 14 base was heard 40 euro cent lower on the day at
Eur42.10/MWh, its lowest level in over seven years, as EUA carbon allowances
again tested record lows after a 10% rebound in the previous session.