No Hope for Berkshire in FERC Market Rate Dispute

(BRK.A), (BRK.B)

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has stuck to its June 2016 decision that requires Berkshire Hathaway’s NV Energy to redo its rates, including issuing revised rates that go back retroactively to Jan. 9, 2015.

On December 21, FERC declined to revisit the ruling stating, “The Berkshire MBR Sellers’ request for rehearing is denied.”

FERC’s June decision requires the affected utilities to provide consumer refunds. FERC found that NV Energy, and Berkshire’s other utility PacifiCorp, were not allowed to sell electricity at market rates.

In the June decision FERC stated, “…we find that the additional information supplied by the Berkshire MBR Sellers has failed to rebut the presumption of market power in the PACE, PACW, Idaho Power, and NorthWestern balancing authority areas. In the absence of reliable delivered price test (DPT) analyses rebutting the presumption of market power, we find that continuation of the Berkshire MBR Sellers’ market-based rate authority in these four balancing authority areas is not just and reasonable.”

FERC went on to order new rate plans.

“Therefore, we herein revoke the Berkshire MBR Sellers’ market-based rate authority in the PACE, PACW, Idaho Power, and NorthWestern balancing authority areas. Accordingly, the Berkshire MBR Sellers are directed to file revised market-based rate tariffs further limiting sales at market-based rates to areas outside of the PACE, PACW, Idaho Power, and NorthWestern balancing authority areas within 30 days of the date of this order.”

© 2016 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

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