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Mid-Atlantic Power Prices Fall as Demand Drops Below Forecasts

Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Spot wholesale electricity in PJM Interconnection LLC’s Western hub fell as demand came in below forecasts.

Prices reversed earlier gains as demand reached 87,598 megawatts at 4:30 p.m., below the grid’s predicted consumption of 87,638 megawatt for that time, according to PJM’s website. Prices climbed earlier on the 13-state grid as above-normal temperatures boosted demand.

Spot power at PJM’s benchmark Western hub fell $1.10, or 3.3 percent, to average $31.99 a megawatt-hour during the hour ended at 4 p.m. from the same time yesterday, grid data shows.

Power at the Eastern hub, which includes New Jersey, fell 92 cents, or 2.7 percent, to $32.51 a megawatt-hour. On-peak Western hub prices traded at a 12 cent premium to the East, narrower than 23 cents yesterday.

Prices gained in Boston after Entergy Corp.’s Pilgrim 1 nuclear reactor shut automatically yesterday because of the loss of one of two 345-kilovolt lines that provide offsite power.

The unit, which is about 4 miles (6 kilometers) east of Plymouth, Massachusetts, will return to service following restoration of power and completion of maintenance, said Carol Wightman, a spokeswoman for the New Orleans-based company.

Power in Boston rose $11.06, or 33 percent, to $44.34 a megawatt-hour at 4 p.m. from a day earlier. The shutdown helped send New York prices higher because of lower imports from New England, said Matthew Oatway, a Boston-based analyst for Genscape Inc., which tracks real-time power data.

New York

“It’s lent some strength to the region and contributed to a growing list of generation outages,” he said.

Spot power in New York City rose $2.33, or 5.9 percent, to $41.83 a megawatt-hour at 4 p.m. Demand was 8 percent higher than a day earlier at 6,588 megawatts, grid data show.

Prices in Northern California dropped $7.94, or 19 percent, to $33.35 a megawatt-hour for the hour ended at 2 p.m. local time from the same time yesterday, grid data show. Southern California power fell $7.85, or 19 percent, to $34.37.

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. cut output at the Diablo Canyon 1 nuclear reactor to 50 percent of capacity yesterday to carry out “necessary work on a feed-water pump,” said Thomas Cuddy, a spokesman for the San Francisco-based company. The plant is located 160 miles northwest of Los Angeles.

To contact the reporter on this story: Harry R. Weber in Houston at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at

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