sources that bought ATUs in 2001, 17 of them had also bought ATUs in 2000,
while the other 10 had not (buyers included those who purchased ATUs on the
market, from ACMA, or in excursion compensation). Of those that sold ATUs in
2001, 10 were also sellers in 2000 while the other 11 did not trade. Thus,
significant percentages of ERMS sources who bought or sold ATUs in 2001 (63%
of buyers, 48% of sellers) did so for both 2000 and 2001. With only two years of
market operation completed, it is not possible to draw any conclusions yet from
this information. However, the patterns of selling and purchasing of ATUs may be
an important metric for market-based systems and will be the subject of further
observation in future reports.
D. ATU Availability
There are several indicators of how accessible ATUs were to the ERMS
participants. One indicator is the relative number of “Buy” and “Sell” postings to
the ERMS bulletin board. There were a total of 26 “Sell” postings which showed
6,887 ATUs, and four “Buy” postings which showed 432 ATUs. The fact that
there was such a high ratio of ATUs for sale as compared to sources attempting to
buy indicates that ATUs were readily available to those looking for them.
A second indicator is the average price for ATUs. If ATUs are difficult to obtain,
their price should rise as a function of supply and demand. If they are readily
available, the price should generally decline. Prices declined steadily from the
2000 season. The average ATU price in 2000 was $75.87; the average in 2001
was $51.93. This indicates that there were enough ATUs on the market to satisfy
all potential customers.
A third indicator is that only one source requested regular access to ACMA
during the reconciliation period – and that was simply out of convenience, not
need. More sources would likely request such access if they could not find the
ATUs they needed on the market. Thus, it can be concluded that sources who
were looking found the ATUs they needed in the market.
A fourth indicator is the number of sources that had to go into excursion
compensation because they did not have enough ATUs to account for their
emissions. Three sources went into excursion compensation after the 2001 season.
However, all had circumstances that cannot be attributed to unavailability of
ATUs. Two miscalculated on their Seasonal Emissions Reports and either traded
away too many ATUs or bought too few, but did not realize this until it was too
late. The other simply waited too long to obtain ATUs. There has been no
indication that any source that was actively looking for ATUs was unable to
obtain the needed amount.
A final indicator is the number of ATUs that expire. After the 2001 season,
13,924 non-ERG ATUs expired without being used. This represents 14.3% of the
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