PublicationsWorking PapersWork in progressBook Chapters and Policy Reports

Research Statement


Fabra, N., D. Rapson, M. Reguant, and J. Wang (2021) “Estimating the Elasticity to Real Time Pricing: Evidence from the Spanish Electricity Market

          American Economic Association Papers & Proceedings, forthcoming.

Fabra, N. and Montero, J.P. (2020) Product Lines and Price Discrimination in Markets with Information Frictions

Management Science, forthcoming. 

Fabra, N. and Reguant, M. (2020) A Model of Search with Price Discrimination

European Economic Review 129.

Fabra, N. and Bian, X. (2020) “Incentives for Information Provision: Energy Efficiency in the Spanish Rental Markets

Energy Economics 90.

Fabra, N. (2018) “A Primer on Capacity Mechanisms

Energy Economics 75, 323-335.

Fabra, N. and García, A. (2015) “Dynamic Price Competition with Switching Costs”

Dynamic Games and Applications 5 (4), 540-567.

Fabra, N. and García, A. (2015) “Market Structure and the Competitive Effects of Switching Costs

Economics Letters 126, 150-155.

Fabra, N. and Reguant, M. (2014) “Passthrough of Emission Costs in Electricity Markets”,

American Economic Review 104(9), 2872-2899. Extended abstract
Highlighted in the NBER Digest, March 2014
Highlighted at Nature Climate Change  4, 860, October 2014

De Frutos, M.A. and Fabra, N. (2012) “How to Allocate Forward Contracts: the case of electricity markets” 

European Economic Review 56(3), 451-469.

Fabra, N., N.H. von der Fehr and M.A. De Frutos, M.A. (2011) “Market Design and Investment Incentives

Economic Journal 121, 1340–1360.

De Frutos, M.A. and Fabra, N. (2011) “Endogenous Capacities and Price Competition: the Role of Uncertainty

International Journal of Industrial Organization 29(4), 399-411.

Campos, E., N. Fabra and García, A. (2007) “Dynamic Auctions for On-demand Services

IEEE Transactions on Systems Man and Cybernetics 37 (6), 878-886.

Fabra, N. and Creti, A. (2007) “Supply Security and Short-Run Capacity Markets for Electricity

Energy Economics 29(2), 259-276.

Fabra, N. (2006) “Collusion with Capacity Constraints over the Business Cycle

International Journal of Industrial Organization 24(1), 69-81.

Fabra, N., and Toro, J. (2005) “Price Wars and Collusion in the Spanish Electricity Market

International Journal of Industrial Organization 23(3), 155-181.

Fabra, N., N.H. von der Fehr and Harbord, D. (2006) “Designing Electricity Auctions

Rand Journal of Economics 37 (1), 23-346.

Crampes, C. and Fabra, N. (2005) “The Spanish Electricity Industry: Plus ca change…

The Energy Journal 26.

Fabra, N. (2003) “Tacit Collusion in Repeated Auctions: Uniform versus Discriminatory auctions

Journal of Industrial Economics L1(3), 271-293.

Fabra, N., N.H. von der Fehr and Harbord, D. (2002) “Modelling Electricity Auctions

Electricity Journal 15(7), 72-81.

Working Papers

Firms and Households during the Pandemic: What do we Learn from their Electricity Consumption? (with Olympia Bover, Sandra García-Uribe, Aitor Lacuesta ad Roberto Ramos).

We analyze the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on electricity consumption patterns in Spain. We highlight the importance of decomposing total electricity consumption into consumption by firms and by households to better understand the economic and social impacts of the crisis. While electricity demand by firms has fallen substantially, the demand by households has gone up. In particular, during the total lockdown, these effects reached -29% and +10% respectively, controlling for temperature and seasonality. While the electricity demand reductions during the second wave were milder, the demand by firms remained 5% below its normal levels. We also document a change in people’s daily routines in response to the stringency of the lockdown measures, as reflected in their hourly electricity consumption patterns.

Banco de España DO nº 2031

CEPR Vetted and Real-Time Papers, Issue 63, 7 January 2021.

The Energy Transition: an Industrial Economics Perspective

A survey of ongoing work shedding light on the optimal policies for a least-cost energy transition.

Technology Neutral versus Technology Specific Procurement (with Juan Pablo Montero)

An imperfectly informed regulator needs to procure multiple units of a good that can be produced with heterogeneous technologies at various costs. Should she run technology-specific or technology-neutral auctions? Should she allow for partial separation across technologies (technology banding)? Should she instead post separate prices for each technology? What are the trade-offs involved? We find that one size does not fit all: the preferred instrument depends on the nature of the available technologies, the extent of information asymmetry regarding their costs, the costs of public funds, and the degree of market power.

Degrowth versus Decoupling: Competing strategies for carbon abatement?” (with Aitor Lacuesta and Mateus Souza)

We compare the “degrowth” versus the “decoupling” strategies for carbon abatement by leveraging the COVID-19 crisis as a natural experiment. Our focus is on the Spanish economy, and in particular, on its power sector. The GDP loss (degrowth) attributable to the pandemic was around 133 Billion Euros, which compared to total emissions reductions (20.4 Million Tons), gives an implicit cost of carbon in the thousands. In turn, power-sector CO2 emissions went down by 3.8 Million Tons (almost 5%). Investing in renewables to achieve similar abatement would have an implicit cost of carbon closer to 57 Euros/Ton.

Storing Power: Market Structure Matters” (with David Andrés-Cerezo)

We assess firms’ incentives to operate and invest in energy storage facilities under different market structures, including competitive and strategic storage owners in the cases in which the storage owner is integrated with a dominant electricity producer or it is a stand-alone firm. The results are key to understanding how to regulate energy storage, an issue which is critical for the deployment of renewables in electricity markets.

CEPR Discussion Paper 15444

Market Power and Price Exposure: Learning from Changes in Renewables Regulation (with Imelda)

We assess the impact of facing producers to varying degrees of price exposure on the market power. This question is particularly relevant for the renewables’ policy debate, as regulators can decide whether to face renewable producers to full, partial, or no price exposure, an issue that affects the performance of power markets. To identify these effects empirically, we exploit a natural experiment that took place in the Spanish electricity market, that switched the type of contract faced by wind producers.

CEPR Discussion Paper 16362

“Auctions with Privately Known Capacities” with Gerard Llobet (February 2020)

We analyse equilibrium bidding behaviour in uniform-price and discriminatory auctions in which each firm’s capacity is stochastic and is private information. We use the model to shed light on the performance of renewables-dominated electricity markets.

CEPR Discussion Paper 14060

Antitrust Fines in Times of Crisis” with Massimo Motta (January 2013) CEPR Discussion Paper 9290 

Work in Progress

“On the Competitive Effects of Retention Strategies”

Retention offers allow firms to price discriminate across consumers with different willingness to switch: prices decrease for those consumers who are more likely to switch, but increase for those who are less likely to switch. In competitive markets, retention offers strengthen competitive pressure. However, if markets are not very competitive, they make them even less so.

Book Chapters

Fabra, N. and Motta, M. (2017) “Assessing Coordinated Effects in Merger Cases
Handbook of Game Theory and Industrial Organization, (Corchon and Marini Eds.) Edward Elgar.

Policy Reports

In English:

Fabra, N., Matthes, F., Newbery, D. and Rüdinger, A. (2015) “The Energy Transition In Europe: Lessons from Germany, the UK and France
A CERRE report

Fabra, N., Moraga, J.L. (2015) “Energy security and sustainability: what role for gas in the Energy Union?
A CERRE Discussion Paper

Fabra, N. and M. Motta (2013) “Coordinated Effects in Merger Cases
A report for the Mexican Competition Authority and the World Bank

Courty, P., N. Fabra, C. Fumagalli, M. Motta (2004) “Identical Price Categories in Oligopolistic Markets: Innocent Behaviour or Collusive Practice?
A report for the Italian Competition Authority

In Spanish:

Fabra, N. (2018) “Mercados eléctricos y mecanismos de capacidad: cuándo, cómo y por qué

Papeles de Energía nº6, 53-76

Fabra, N. (2018) “La Transición Energética en el Sector Eléctrico: un imperativo para el medio ambiente y para la economía” 

Cuaderno de Trabajo Transición energética en España – Una propuesta desde la socialdemocracia, Fundación Pablo Iglesias

Fabra, N. (2018) “La Unión Energética: Instrumento para la Transición Energética en Europa” 

Revista de Economía ICE

Fabra, N. (2014) “Funcionamiento y Diseño de los Mercados Eléctricos: ¿Qué nos enseña la Teoría de Juegos?

Economía Industrial 393, 25-32

Fabra, N, J.P. Montero, and M. Reguant (2013) “Competencia en el Mercado Eléctrico Chileno”

A report for the Fiscalía Nacional Económica de Chile

Fabra, N. and J. Fabra Utray (2012) “El Déficit Tarifario en el Sector Eléctrico Español

Papeles de Economía Española 134

Fabra, N. and J. Fabra Utray (2010) “Competencia y Poder de Mercado en los Mercados Eléctricos

Cuadernos Económicos del ICE 79, pp. 17-43

Fabra, N. (2010) “Modelo Energético Sostenible

Chapter 17 in “La Ley de Economía Sostenible y la Reformas Estructurales: 25 propuestas”, FEDEA

Fabra, N. and J. Fabra Utray (2009) “Un Diseño de Mercado para el Sector Eléctrico Español

Papeles de Economía Española 121, 141-158

Fabra, N. “El Funcionamiento del Mercado Eléctrico Español bajo la Ley del Sector Eléctrico”.
Chapter 10 in “Del Monopolio al Mercado. La Comisión Nacional de Energía: diez años en perspectiva”.

Fabra, N. (2006) “La Electricidad: Mercados, Inversiones, y Garantía de Suministro”

Economía Industrial 364, 63-74