Weakness In Electricity Trading Exposed; State Agency $73M Short
FOLSOM (CBS/AP) — California officials say a big electricity trader has apparently figured out a way to exploit vulnerabilities in the state’s $8 billion-a-year electricity market, just as Enron Corp. did a decade ago.
The Sacramento Bee reports authorities are investigating a subsidiary of the New York investment bank JPMorgan Chase & Co., which may have grabbed an extra $73 million during 2010 and 2011.
The California Independent System Operator, the Folsom-based agency that runs the state’s power grid and oversees last-minute electricity sales, has recovered $20 million from the company so far.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is investigating on California’s behalf, and the fate of the remaining $53 million claimed by the ISO isn’t clear.
The investigation became public when the commission sued JPMorgan.
The company denies any wrongdoing.
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