Although the global economy is slowly recovering from the worst downturn since the second world war, policymakers in Western countries are finding it very difficult to stimulate growth and boost aggregate demand. Monetary easing now remains the lone tool after further fiscal stimulus was ruled out at June's G20 summit, where heads of state pledged to halve national budget deficits by 2013.
Google has been granted a license to trade energy on the US wholesale market, in an attempt to go green and procure renewable energy. This load-shifting through geographically diverse datacenters may result in significant savings and greener overall energy consumption for the company, and could signal the start of a new trend for companies looking to better manage their energy costs.
The Chicago Mercantile Exchange is proposing to allow UK versus US trading on the National Balancing Point gas market in a move that signals greater market transparency and efficiency. In addition to the improvements in liquidity, the new contracts will encourage wider gas market trading and, more significantly, the development of a liquefied natural gas spot market.
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