Prices of Power Rose as Gas Prices Fell in October on Back of Price Dip in Nuclear, Wind and Solar

Plentiful Supply, Flat Demand Prompted Natural Gas Price Declines

Nov 24, 2015, 05:00 ET from Platts

LONDON, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Continental European power prices perked up in October on the back of reduced nuclear generation and a slump in wind and solar output in the dominant export market of Germany, according to data released by Platts, a leading global provider of energy, petrochemicals, metals and agriculture information.

European power prices, according to the Platts Continental Power Index (CONTI)*, climbed 16.4% to €42.10 per megawatt hour (MWh) in October. On a year-over-year basis, the index was up 6.6%.

Platts' regional analysis of European power and gas markets in October showed the following:

  • Germany: German day-ahead prices last month averaged €38.47/MWh, a two-year high amid below-average wind output and reduced nuclear generation. German wind and solar power output in October totaled 5.9 terawatt hours (TWh), the lowest level since November 2014 and 35% below September.
  • France: Day-ahead prices averaged €43.97/MWh in October, up 17% month over month and 6% year over year. Colder temperatures caused electricity demand for heating purposes to rise 5.2% year over year to 37.74 TWh. Near-curve contracts, however, continue to reflect underlying oversupply, with front month November power falling 15% in value year over year to €41.95/MWh.
  • U.K. power: Day-ahead power prices fell 4% month over month and 10% year over year to £39.88/MWh in October as mild temperatures and plummeting gas prices drove down demand and generation costs. Wind output was subdued into late October, however, and much tighter capacity margins caused price spikes in early November as thermal units went offline unexpectedly.
  • U.K. gas: National Balancing Point (NBP) day-ahead gas prices were delivered at an average of 39.55 pence/therm in October, down 3.65% month over month and down more than 21% over year. U.K. shippers took advantage of low spot prices to build storage levels, with stocks moving from 3.53 billion cubic meters (Bcm) (86.25% full), at the start of the month and finishing at 3.8 Bcm (92.84% full) at the end.
  • European gas: Dutch TTF, Europe's most liquid natural gas trading hub, spot gas prices averaged €18.25/MWh for October delivery, 4.9% down month over month and 13.73% lower year over year amid subdued demand and generally comfortable supply. Bearish sentiment pushed delivered TTF day-ahead prices to their lowest level since August 2014, dipping to €17.375/MWh at the end of the month. Periodic bouts of colder weather were unable to push spot prices up significantly, with total demand down 5% year over year in October to just under 6 Bcm, driven by sharp falls in exports and storage injections.

In a European energy market characterized by healthy supply and falling commodity prices, the U.K.'s  security of electricity supply looked unusually exposed early November, said Platts Power in Europe editor Henry Edwardes-Evans. "National Grid called for 500 MW of extra capacity and issued an inadequate generation warning November 4 that saw system buy prices spiking up well over £400/MWh."

Further U.K. power system warnings are expected this winter, while winter 2016 "is beginning to look tighter still in terms of supply, with several large coal-fired power stations due for closure next year," Edwardes-Evans noted.

Under a cold, low wind scenario, Platts Eclipse Energy, an analytics and forecasting unit of Platts, expects prices above £150/MWh for roughly 7% of half hours in Winter 2016.


Platts Continental Europe and U.K. Day-Ahead Monthly Averages








TTF (€/MWh)




U.K. Power (£/MWh)




U.K. Gas (pence/therm)




Source: Platts

NOTE: All figures are monthly averages of daily day-ahead contract prices as assessed by Platts.

For more information on electric power or the methodology used by Platts in its power assessments, visit the Platts website

* The Platts CONTI is a demand-weighted baseload average of day-ahead contracts assessed in Germany, Switzerland, France, Belgium and the Netherlands. The Platts U.K. assessments reflect day-ahead contracts assessed for firm delivery of power on the high voltage network of England, Wales and Scotland, and at the National Balancing Point (NBP) for gas. The Platts assessments reflect prices as determined between buyer and seller in the open physical markets.

Global, Americas, Asia: Kathleen Tanzy, + 1 917 331 4607,

About Platts: Founded in 1909, Platts is a leading global provider of energy, petrochemicals, metals and agriculture information and a premier source of benchmark prices for the physical and futures markets. Platts' news, pricing, analytics, commentary and conferences help customers make better-informed trading and business decisions and help the markets operate with greater transparency and efficiency. Customers in more than 150 countries benefit from Platts' coverage of the biofuels, carbon emissions, coal, electricity, oil, natural gas, metals, nuclear power, petrochemical, shipping and sugar markets.  A division of McGraw Hill Financial, Platts is based in London with more than 1000 employees in more than 15 offices worldwide. Additional information is available at

About McGraw Hill Financial: McGraw Hill Financial (NYSE: MHFI) is a leading financial intelligence company providing the global capital and commodity markets with independent benchmarks, credit ratings, portfolio and enterprise risk solutions, and analytics. The Company's iconic brands include Standard & Poor's Ratings Services, S&P Capital IQ and SNL, S&P Dow Jones Indices, Platts, CRISIL and J.D. Power. The Company has approximately 20,000 employees in 31 countries. Additional information is available at