Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Umeå Economic Studies,
Umeå University, Department of Economics

No 941: The effect of price on electricity contract choice

Mattias Vesterberg ()
Additional contact information
Mattias Vesterberg: Department of Economics, Umeå University, Postal: Department of Economics, Umeå University, S 901 87 Umeå, Sweden

Abstract: I explore how households switch between fixed-price and variable-price electricity contracts in response to variations in price and temperature, conditional on previous contract choice. Using panel data with roughly 54000 Swedish households, a dynamic probit model is estimated. The results suggest that the choice of contract exhibits substantial state dependence, with an estimated marginal effect of previous contract choice of 0:96, and that the short-run effects of variation in prices and temperature on the choice of electricity contract are small. Further, the state dependence and price responsiveness are similar across housing types, income levels and other dimensions. A plausible explanation of these results is that transaction costs are perceived to be larger than the relatively small cost savings from switching between contracts.

Keywords: Electricity demand; electricity contract choice; demand flexibility

JEL-codes: D10; D12; Q41; Q48

33 pages, January 22, 2017

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