The collapse of wholesale markets has utilities once again making the purchasing decisions, and taking all the risks.
If a common theme is emerging from the various policy directions across the country, it seems to be that responsibility for supply resources is moving away from open markets and back into the hands of load-serving utilities.
An evolving market demands a greater focus on power prices and required return on equity.
Valuation can be difficult even in stable markets, and executives setting their company's strategic course need to understand how the market for power projects is evolving and what may lie ahead.
After 10 years of waiting, some experts say a Republican-controlled Congress and a patriotic mood will make the difference in passing energy legislation this year.
Could this be the year that Congress passes a comprehensive national energy bill? That's the question on the mind of the utilities industry. Some say with Republicans controlling both the U.S. House and Senate-not to mention the presidency-the prospects for comprehensive energy legislation are bright. But some pundits are not so sure.
Who should have "green tag" ownership under power purchase agreements, the buyers or the sellers?
A legal controversy is brewing in the electric industry over who should reap the financial benefits of the green characteristics of power plants, under existing power purchase agreements (PPA).
Why it happened? Who lost in the bust? Who will survive to build another turbine?
According to the solar industry, a U.S. appeals court decisionand a Southern California Edison petition pending at the FERCmight put them out of business.
"If Edison were to prevail in this, it would have hugely negative implications for the solar operators."
An alternative measure of performance - not based on dividends, earnings growth or P/E ratios.
How to place a value on a utility company? That is the question.
The traditional models no longer work very well. Dividend discount models will not work well if utilities cut dividends and buy back stock to return capital to the shareholders. Earnings growth offers no reliable performance gauge either, as utilities acquire or divest large amounts of capital. Restructuring charges often become necessary to shift resources to their best use.