Thoenes, Stefan (2013). Empirical Essays on Energy Economics. PhD thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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The main part of this thesis consists of three distinct essays that empirically analyze economic issues related to energy markets in the United States and Europe. The first chapter provides an introduction and discusses the motivation for the different analyses pursued in this thesis. The second chapter examines attention effects in the market for hybrid vehicles. We show that local media coverage, gasoline price changes and unprecedented record gasoline prices have a significant impact on the consumers' attention. As attention is not directly observable, we analyze online search behavior as a proxy for the revealed consumer attention. Our study is based on a unique weekly panel dataset for 19 metropolitan areas in the US. Additionally, we use monthly state-level panel data to show that the adoption rate of hybrid vehicles is robustly related to our measure of attention. Our results show that the consumers' attention fluctuates strongly and systematically. The third chapter shows how the effect of fuel prices varies with the level of electricity demand. It analyzes the relationship between daily prices of electricity, natural gas and carbon emission allowances with a semiparametric varying smooth coefficient cointegration model. This model is used to analyze the market impact of the nuclear moratorium by the German Government in March 2011. Futures prices of electricity, natural gas and emission allowances are used to show that the market efficiently accounts for the suspended capacity and correctly expects that several nuclear plants will not be switched on after the moratorium. In the fourth chapter, we develop a structural vector autoregressive model (VAR) for the German natural gas market. In particular, we illustrate the usefulness of our approach by disentangling the effects of different fundamental influences during four specific events: The financial crisis starting in 2008, the Russian-Ukrainian gas dispute in January 2009, the Libyan civil war in 2011 as well as the cold spell and Russian supply interruption in February 2012. Our results show that the natural gas price is affected by temperature, storage and supply shortfalls in the short term, while the long-term development is closely tied to crude oil and coal prices.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
Translated abstract:
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Thoenes, Stefanthoenes@wiso.uni-koeln.deUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-51834
Date: 13 June 2013
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Management, Economy and Social Sciences
Divisions: Externe Einrichtungen > An-Institute > Associated Institutes of the Faculty of Management, Economics and Social Sciences > Institute for Energy Economics
Subjects: Economics
Uncontrolled Keywords:
electricity, natural gas, energy, limited attentionEnglish
Date of oral exam: 13 June 2013
NameAcademic Title
Höffler, FelixProf. Dr.
Refereed: Yes


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