• Reset

Found 280 Results
Page 27 of 28

Assessing profitability in competition policy analysis

Oxera was commissioned by the Office of Fair Trading to produce a discussion paper on assessing profitability in the context of competition analysis.

The paper focused on the relevance of profitability and the implications for competition policy, provided a framework for undertaking profitability assessment, and addressed a wide range of practical difficulties that may arise.

Read More

Interim review of Network Rail’s track access charges

Oxera acted as the lead economic adviser to Office of the Rail Regulator (ORR) during the interim review of Network Rail’s access charges. This included detailed input to the three main workstreams identified by the ORR as part of the review.

In relation to the assessment of expenditure, Oxera undertook top-down and process benchmarking analysis including the use of international evidence on costs and productivity. For the incentives and financing workstreams, Oxera assisted the ORR in the development of a regulatory framework consistent with the status of Network Rail as a debt-financed company limited by guarantee.

Read More

The non-market value of generation technologies

The government’s 2003 Energy White Paper has environmental and energy-reliability goals at its core. It promises low-carbon energy for the UK, and recognises the tensions this would create in delivering affordable heating for vulnerable households, and competitive energy markets. Much of the task before the government is in quantifying these tensions.

In this report, Oxera provided the first quantification of the value to the economy of improved reliability and lower environmental damage from electricity generation. It estimated the value of avoiding blackouts, and of environmental harm from burning polluting fuels. These hidden benefits have been ignored in previous studies. The results and methodology are now available for stakeholders to scrutinise and to debate.

Read More

The interaction between environmental tax and trading systems

The Environment Agency selected Oxera to publish a paper on the interaction of tax and emissions trading systems and present it at a seminar of government economists.

The report included a review of the academic literature on the interaction of tax and trading systems in ‘hybrid systems’. It also explored the dynamic features of such policy mixes. The theory was applied to the UK climate and waste policies in two case studies.

Read More

The impact of average zonal transmission losses applied throughout Great Britain

Following a comprehensive cost–benefit study undertaken by Oxera, the Department of Trade and Industry has announced that it is not minded to include average zonal transmission losses (AZTL) in the Great Britain Balancing and Settlement Code that will be established under the British Electricity Trading and Transmission Arrangements.

Oxera carried out full load-flow modelling of the Great Britain electricity transmission networks in conjunction with modelling of the wholesale electricity market to compare outcomes under uniform and zonal loss charging.

The report found that the benefits of AZTL were ambiguous if implementation costs in England and Wales were taken into account, while there would be significant redistributional consequences. However, the analysis found that the impact of AZTL on renewables was likely to be small.

Read More

Cost–benefit analysis of proposed FSA regulation of soft commissions and bundled brokerage

Following on from the research report on soft commissions and bundled brokerage services, Oxera was commissioned by the Financial Services Authority to undertake a cost–benefit analysis of the regulations that it proposed to introduce.

Evidence was gathered from a series of interviews with fund managers, brokers and research companies. Using publicly available financial data and data provided from the surveys of fund managers and brokers, the savings from the likely reductions in the excessive consumption of research and other services acquired by fund managers were estimated. Estimates of compliance costs were made, based on publicly available data and interview evidence.

Read More

An assessment of soft commission arrangements and bundled brokerage services in the UK

Oxera was commissioned by the Financial Services Authority to examine the practice of soft commissions and bundled brokerage services, to establish whether they pose regulatory risks and/or competition problems.

In-depth interviews were conducted with pension fund trustees, fund managers, brokers, research companies, industry experts and regulators, to obtain insight into competitive conditions in the markets concerned, and into the various horizontal and vertical relationships and contractual arrangements between market participants. This was followed by an extensive questionnaire for pension funds, fund managers and brokers. The principal objectives were:

to obtain quantitative evidence to underpin the economic analyses of competition, bundling and soft commissions;
to estimate the order of magnitude of bundling and soft commissions;
to test various hypotheses and statements that have been made about these practices.

In addition, Oxera reviewed the literature on soft commission arrangements, and examined and compared regulations on soft commissions and bundled brokerage services in several major countries.

The Financial Services Authority used the research findings in formulating policy proposals, and subsequently commissioned Oxera to perform a cost–benefit analysis on the proposed set of new rules (see Related items).

Read More

Interoperability and horizontal markets in European digital television

Oxera was commissioned by the European Commission to investigate the issues surrounding the introduction of interoperability of interactive services and the creation of horizontal retail markets for equipment in the context of digital broadcast services in Europe.

The study involved an economic analysis of the European television market, identification of technological gateways in digital television and the development of policy options to introduce interoperability and horizontal markets.

In addition, the study addressed the related issue of the degree to which the market is likely to deliver certain types of digital services or products and whether there are any market failures and bottlenecks that need to be addressed. The final report was published in March 2003, and formed a significant input into the formulation of policy to govern the process of standardisation and interoperability in the European digital broadcast market.

Read More

A social time preference for use in long-term discounting

Oxera prepared a comprehensive review of the literature on social time preference rates for HM Treasury’s revised Green Book, published in January 2003.

It set out the cases for and against a change from a constant social discount rate to one that declines over time, illustrating the results with simulations and examples from transport, climate change and nuclear policy. The Treasury then adopted a declining social discount rate using the rate of decline proposed by Oxera.

Read More

The role of custody in European asset management

Following the research report on the ‘Risks and regulation in asset management: is there a role for capital requirements’, the European Asset Management Association (EAMA) commissioned Oxera to undertake research specifically investigating custody arrangements in the asset management industry, the report for which was published by EAMA. The aim of the custody project was to evaluate the extent to which external custodianship of client assets protects investors from operational risks.

As part of the research, Oxera looked into the services provided by custodians, and the regulatory and contractual responsibilities of custodians in relation to asset managers and their clients. In addition, a questionnaire was sent to asset managers and custodian banks across Europe, to obtain further information about the level of client protection afforded by current custody arrangements.

Read More