November 24, 2014 / 10:59 AM / 5 years ago

EUROPE POWER-Forward prices at 11-week high on cold winter forecasts

* Curve buyers bet on cold January, Q1

* Cooler weather arrives gradually, lifts spot demand

* Supply tight after predictions for prolonged warmth

FRANKFURT, Nov 24 (Reuters) - European forward power prices posted 11-week highs early on Monday, boosted by expectations of a cold winter, which would drive up demand, traders said.

“It is about the possibility of cold weather in December and first quarter 2015, that translates into the annual contract,” one said, also citing positive fuel markets trends.

Germany’s Cal ‘15 baseload power was at 35.60 euros ($44.1) a megawatt hour, up 35 cents from Friday and at a level last seen on Sept. 8.

The equivalent French Cal ‘15 baseload was up 25 cents at 42.45 euros/MWh.

December expiry carbon was last up 0.7 percent at 7.05 euros a tonne.

Coal for 2015 delivery to north Europe was at $72.95 a tonne, up 80 cents from the previous working day’s API2 index, broker quotes showed. UK gas also showed strong gains on most contracts.

Brent crude oil stabilised around $80 a barrel as world powers met in Vienna for the final day of talks on Iran’s nuclear programme, ahead of a key meeting of producer group OPEC to discuss production.

A talking point in the German market was a yet-to-be-discussed plan by government to enforce more coal plant closures in a bid to meet ambitious climate goals.

Traders said there was no short term impact on the wholesale market, but the affected utility companies were likely to ask for high compensation for closures, echoing developments in the nuclear plant exit plan.

Prompt power prices jumped as supply was considered tight compared with healthy demand. Consumption in Germany should rise by 1.3 GW up to midweek and by nearly 2 GW in France, according to Point Carbon data.

Point Carbon also predicted a temperature fall of three degrees and one degree in the two countries respectively between Monday and Wednesday, based on 24-hour daily averages.

German Tuesday delivery baseload power traded 5.95 euros up from what was paid for Monday, rising to 45.95 euros/MWh. The equivalent French contract gained 8.15 euros to 46.75 euros/MWh.

Wind and solar supply levels were modest on Monday and expected to remain so in the course of the week, Point Carbon said. Most thermal plants were seen offering lower availability up to Friday. (1 US dollar = 0.8068 euro) (Reporting by Vera Eckert; Editing by Keiron Henderson)

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