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Introduction

Energy economists want to get the price right. Politicians can’t define obscene energy prices but know them when they see them. Energy traders believe that everything has a price and they know it, but if you outlaw price only outlaws will know it.

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Whether you are an energy economist, a politician, an energy trader, or an energy consumer, energy and its price are of interest to you. Energy in all its forms can help us live easier and more comfortable lives. In the 1950s, it was touted that nuclear power would introduce an era when energy would be a non-scarce resource, and we would have “power too cheap to meter.” (Today, we would call that a bear market with perpetually decreasing prices.) Alas, this prediction has not yet come to pass. Energy is still a limited natural resource that is occasionally scarce, with prices rising in a bull market. But whether the market is running with the bulls or hibernating with the bears, we must understand and use our energy resources wisely.

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