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Do Markets Make Good Commissioners?: A Quasi-Experimental Analysis of Retail Electric Restructuring in Ohio

Journal Title Journal of Public Policy
Published Date July 03, 2018
Research Type
Authors Noah Dormady


Empirical support for the purported benefits of retail electric deregulation is mixed at best. Prior studies that identify states as simply “retail deregulated” overlook complex policy environments in which deregulation is implemented by regulators with a high degree of discretion. Prior studies also rely on Energy Information Administration data that do not account for core regulatory interventions that can take place during the process of implementing deregulation. Using robust time series household final bill survey data from the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, this article provides a quasi-experimental analysis of the price impacts of retail electric restructuring in Ohio. The results suggest that residential electricity prices have increased following retail restructuring in all service territories in Ohio, with significant favourable welfare effects observed only in the Cincinnati area, where key policy implementation stages were not circumvented.

Dormady, N., Jiang, Z., & Hoyt, M. (2019).  Do Markets Make Good Commissioners: A Quasi-Experimental Analysis of Retail Electric Restructuring in Ohio. Journal of Public Policy, 39(3): 483-515.