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New England Electricity Gains as Demand Jumps Above Forecasts

By: Naureen S. Malik |

Spot wholesale power from Connecticut to Maine rose as demand topped the grid operator’s forecasts.

Prices reversed earlier losses as electricity use on the six-state grid rose to 19,167 megawatts at 12:20 p.m., 0.7 percent higher than the forecast for the hour, according to ISO New England Inc.’s website. Power load was below forecasts until 9:30 a.m.

The high temperature in Boston will be 76 degrees Fahrenheit (24 Celsius), 6 below normal, according to AccuWeather Inc. in the State College, Pennsylvania. The operator forecast that the moderate weather would cause a larger drop in demand than occurred.

Spot electricity for Boston rose $10.79, or 31 percent, to $46.01 a megawatt-hour during the hour ended at noon from the same time yesterday, grid data compiled by Bloomberg show. Yesterday’s day-ahead price for the hour was $43.49. The on-peak average is down 32 percent at $30.09 so far today. On-peak hours are Monday through Friday 7 a.m. until 11 p.m.

“New England was a little bit off on their forecast,” said Kate Trischitta, director of trading at Consolidated Edison Inc.’s wholesale energy trading division in New York. “You haven’t seen anything major contribute to that, probably just weather-related with a little bit of load hanging in there.”

Prices also gained in New York and the 13-state grid operated by PJM Interconnection LLC, which stretches from New Jersey into North Carolina and Chicago.

Manhattan Power

Spot power for delivery to Manhattan and its four neighboring boroughs was up $5.59, or 14 percent, at $46.84 a megawatt-hour for the hour ended at noon. PJM’s benchmark Western hub, which includes prices from Washington to Erie, Pennsylvania, was up $1.70, or 4.6 percent, at $38.87.

Prices may double next week in the Northeast as multiple days of hot weather sweep parts of the East Coast, Trischitta said. “Everybody is looking at next week today because there is a big jump in the forecast,” she said.

Boston forward prices are trading at $70 a megawatt-hour for July 15 and at $80 for remaining days of the work week, while New York power is being valued in the $80s for the week, Trischitta said.

The highs for Boston will reach 90 degrees, 8 higher than the usual reading, on July 15 and stay in the 88- to 90-degree range for the next three days, AccuWeather said. Washington’s high will rise to 96 degrees on July 16, 7 above normal, and hover in the low to mid-90s the rest of the week, the forecaster said.

Peak demand for New York City will climb to 10,409 megawatts on July 17, a 15 percent increase of today’s expected high of 9,071 megawatts, data from the New York Independent System Operator Inc. show. PJM expects demand on its grid to jump to 149,577 megawatts on July 18, 33 percent above today’s projected peak of 112,390 megawatts.