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Electricity prices reach record lows in February


Electricity prices reach record lows in February

Electricity prices fell to historically low levels in February 2004. The average monthly prices at each of the three reference nodes were the lowest since the wholesale market began in October 1996. On 22 February, the average price at Haywards was 0.04c/kWh, the lowest daily average price recorded at Haywards since market start. Prices were also very consistent throughout the month, for example the average daily price at Otahuhu was below 2.50 c/kWh for all but two days.

The low prices reflected the strong inflows into key catchments which led to above average hydro storage levels throughout the country. February's inflows totalled 3107 GWh, 142% of average for the month. On 1 February, storage was 3695 GWh. By month's end storage had increased to 4177 GWh, 134% of average.

The average price for February at the Haywards reference node was 1.36 c/kWh, down from January's average of 6.96 c/kWh. The average price at Benmore, the South Island reference node, was 1.05 c/kWh in February compared with 4.91 c/kWh in January. Prices at Otahuhu, a typical upper North Island reference node, decreased to an average of 1.61 c/kWh in February from 7.58 c/kWh in January.

Average daily demand in February 2004 was 96.922 GWh, a 1.6% increase on January's level of 95.600 GWh. The average daily demand in February 2003 was 97.686 GWh.

For more information on electricity prices and hydrological conditions, visit: http://www.comitfree.co.nz/ or http://www.nzelectricity.co.nz/

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