Wholesale electricity price spikes in Victoria and South Australia trigger regulator report

The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) monitors and reports on wholesale electricity markets. As part of this role, we report on events that result in wholesale electricity spot prices exceeding $5000 per megawatt hour (MWh).

Most end-customers are not directly exposed to wholesale electricity prices. Energy retailers are the main purchasers in the wholesale electricity market. Retailers bundle electricity with network services for sale to their residential, commercial and industrial customers. Generators and retailers can manage their exposure to price variations in the wholesale market by entering hedge contracts that lock in firm prices for the electricity they intend to produce or buy.

On Friday 25 January the spot price in Victoria exceeded $5000/MWh on two occasions at 11 am and 11.30 am and once at 11.30 am in South Australia. The spot price reached $14 500/MWh in Victoria and $11 340/MWh in South Australia.

We expect to publish the report into these high prices within 40 business days, by 26 March 2019, on the AER’s website.

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Issued date: 
25 January 2019
AER reference: 
AC 09/19