Iberdrola Proposes To Thousands Of Its Customers In France

The price of electricity will drop 9% this Sunday, despite what will continue to exceed the psychological level of 250 euros per megawatt hour (MWh) and will exceed by 138% what consumers paid on the same day last year.

Specifically, for this Sunday, August 21, the average price per megawatt hour in the electricity ‘pool’ will be 141.1 euros/MWh . To this should be added 120.57 euros/MWh for compensation to the gas companies, so that the real average price for the regulated tariff consumer will be 261.67 euros per megawatt hour .

This price for PVPC customers is the product of adding the average price of the auction in the wholesale market and the compensation that the demand will pay to the combined cycle plants for the application of the ‘Iberian exception’ to cap the price of gas for the generation of electricity.

This price, however, will only be applied to households that have contracted a regulated rate (PVPC) , almost 11 million in Spain. As long as they have their bill in the free electricity market , they will only notice the increase when their contract is updated annually.

At what time is electricity cheaper?
According to data from the OMIE and without counting compensation to gas companies, the cheapest hour of electricity will be in the afternoon, between 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m., when electricity will be worth 25.09 euros/MWh.

At what time is electricity more expensive?
The most expensive time to turn on the light will be at dawn, between 00:00 and 01:00, when it will cost 205.41 euros/MWh. After falling during the day, it will pick up again in the last three hours of the day.

Why does the price of electricity vary so much?
The main cause of the price fluctuations is that the price of gas is experiencing strong increases and its use is essential for the production of energy in the so-called combined cycle plants. Thus, any impact on the price of gas has an almost immediate impact on the price of electricity.

The impact of the ‘Iberian exception’
In the absence of the ‘Iberian exception’ mechanism to limit the price of gas for the generation of electricity, the price of electricity in Spain would be on average around 373.19 euros/MWh, which is around 111.52 euros/MWh more than with the compensation for clients of the regulated rate, who will thus pay 29.88% less on average.

The ‘Iberian mechanism’, which came into force on June 15, limits the price of gas for electricity generation to an average of 48.8 euros per MWh over a period of twelve months, thus covering the coming winter, a period in which which energy prices are more expensive.

Specifically, the ‘Iberian exception’ sets a path for natural gas for electricity generation at a price of 40 euros/MWh in the initial six months, and subsequently, a monthly increase of five euros/MWh until the end of the measure .

The Third Vice President of the Government and Minister for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera, estimated this week that the Iberian exception has meant a saving of 1,383 million euros for Spanish consumers in its two months of validity.

Buffett Receives The Green Light To Buy Half Of Occidental Petroleum

The purchases have been happening in recent months. Berkshire Hathaway, the company run by Warren Buffett, has been acquiring portions of the oil company Occidental Petroleum in recent times and has now received the go-ahead from regulators to take over 50% of the company.

According to a document published on Friday by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Berkshire requested permission on July 11 to take over half of the oil company, something to which regulators have agreed. .

On that date, Berkshire owned 18.72% of the shareholding of the energy firm, a percentage that has continued to expand since then to touch 20% of the titles.

On the fundamentals side, which has always been Buffett’s hallmark investor, Occidental is benefiting from rising oil prices in recent months, posting $3.7bn in Q2 net profit. .

But in addition to the positive of its accounts, the company’s price has been greatly boosted by the repeated interest of Buffett – who, however, said a few months ago that he did not find interesting options in the market, and since then has not stopped to make different depth inversions. He is trading at a PER (times earnings per share is contained in the share price) of 7.01.

Thus, Occidental Petroleum is revalued by 129.52% so far this year (this Friday it did almost 10% after knowing the approval of the FERC). The US selective of the sector, the S&P 500 Energy, limits its revaluation in this 2022 to 42.79%. The comparables are nowhere near Buffett’s bet, be they Exxon (+48.06%), Chevron (+32.22%) or Marathon Petroleum (52.99%).

Bundesbank Forecasts 10% Inflation In The Fall In Germany

The president of the central bank of Germany (Bundesbank), Joachim Nagel, predicted this Saturday that in the fall inflation could rise to 10% and called for a new rise in interest rates by the European Central Bank (ECB).

Nagel pointed out that the rise in inflation – which stood at 8.5% in July – would be driven by the end of measures such as subsidies for fuel and public transport prices and the application of a new price supplement of gas, according to what he said in an interview with the Rheinische Post newspaper collected by Agencia Efe .

“A double-digit inflation rate was last seen in Germany more than 70 years ago,” the Bundesbank president said, adding that if the energy crisis deepens, a recession next winter “looks likely.”

During the first half of the year, the German economy has reacted relatively well to the difficult conditions, but additional supply problems – such as the interruption of river transport due to drought – could cloud expectations, he said.

The price escalation will not stop in the near future, he predicted, and indicated that throughout 2023 the inflation rate will be above the 4.5% that the Bundesbank projections show so far.

“The probability is growing that inflation will be higher than what has been forecast and that next year we will have a six in front of the comma,” he said.

Nagel therefore demanded a new rise in interest rates by the ECB, which in July had already increased them by 0.50 percentage points and whose next meeting is scheduled for September 8.

He stated that this is a general expectation, although he did not want to provide any concrete figures and pointed out that the last few months have shown that the ECB must decide its policy in the short term, from meeting to meeting.

“The decisive thing will be to keep inflation expectations stable at 2% in the medium term. I am convinced that the ECB Council will adopt the necessary monetary policy measures for this,” said the president of the Bundesbank.

BBVA Completes Its Share Repurchase With 3,160 Million Euros

BBVA completes its share repurchase with a total investment of 3,160 million euros. BBVA has completed this Friday its share repurchase program in which it has invested a total of 3,160 million euros and has acquired 637.7 million shares, equivalent to 9.6% of the entity’s capital.

The bank had one of the largest share buyback programs in Europe, with a maximum amount of 3,500 million euros. The first tranche of 1,500 million euros was completed in early March, while it decided to carry out the second tranche of 2,000 million in two segments of a maximum amount of 1,000 million euros each. This first segment of 1,000 million was closed last May.

At the end of June, the bank announced the start of the second segment, which completed the program and had a maximum monetary amount of 1,000 million euros and a maximum number of shares of 149,996,808.

This Friday, the bank has completed the purchases of own shares of the last segment by acquiring 149.9 million titles, representing approximately 2.3% of the bank’s share capital.

Finally, it has invested 660 million euros in the last segment, below the maximum of 1,000 million euros established, so the total amount of the program has been reduced to 3,160 million euros.

With this, it culminates its repurchase program, which began in November and whose objective is to reduce its share capital through the amortization of the acquired securities, as a means of remunerating its shareholders.

Tips To Help You Pay Off Credit Card Balances Faster

The average credit card rate is currently above 17%, significantly higher than almost all other consumer loans, and may reach 19% by the end of the year, which would be an all-time high.

Reducing balances is “crucial for financial health”
“Reducing credit card debt is always crucial to financial health,” Amadin said. “However, now more than ever it is critical that Americans survive everyday expenses and can continue to set aside money for savings.”

Here are his top three tips for paying off credit card debt, once and for all:

Budget: To start, using a spreadsheet or online tool can help you see where you’re spending money and how best to disperse those funds. That will also help you identify regular expenses that could be taking money away from your long-term goals.

Cut expenses: When trying to reduce debt, be sure to temporarily cut out any unnecessary expenses, like streaming subscriptions, dining out, or impulse purchases. Cutting those expenses will help you stay on budget, stop adding to your revolving balance, and pay off more debt.

Pay more than the minimum balance: Paying credit cards on time will allow you to avoid late fees and penalties. But do not limit yourself to paying the minimum required: that will not do much to avoid high interest on the balance. Paying just more than the minimum will reduce the amount of interest you have to pay each month and help you reach your goal.

In conclusion, the most important thing is to organize your finances and know how much you can spend while stabilizing your economy.

Millions Of Children At Risk Of Losing Their Health Coverage

The long-awaited end of the pandemic will be a relief, but it is feared it will have an unintended effect: that millions of families will lose health coverage in the United States, including more than 6.7 million children , experts say . This is due to the end of the federal declaration of a public health emergency due to the coronavirus, which has granted extra health benefits since 2020 and ensures that residents do not lose their insurance.

Children living in Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Missouri, Nevada and Texas “are especially at risk”, indicates an analysis by the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute, which describes a worrying post-COVID-19 scenario if states and Congress do not act .

A few weeks ago, the emergency was renewed once again until October and many breathed a sigh of relief. But this is temporary: It is set to expire, and state agencies and residents need to prepare — especially Latino and communities of color, who may be hit the hardest. Partly because they do not know what is happening or do not take action.

“Many families that include immigrants are afraid to interact with the government because they are concerned that it could have a negative impact on immigration issues,” Shelby Gonzales, vice president of Immigration Policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), told Noticias Telemundo. But she points out that the information given for health services should not affect immigration procedures , nor is it considered in the public charge rule .

Why COVID-19 brought more access to health. With the pandemic emergency , the federal government provides extra funds to the states and imposes new rules to ensure health care. The policy establishes continuous coverage for those enrolled in the Medicaid low-cost health program (regardless of changes in income, age or non-payment of premiums) and eliminates copays for teleconsultations and COVID-19 tests, among other aid. The impact is wide-ranging: an estimated half of the nation’s children (about 40 million) have Medicaid or CHIP health care.

What will happen when the emergency expires. States will need to review whether more than 80 million Medicaid recipients are still eligible. It is a titanic effort, requiring personnel and time that many states do not have. First, they must verify with electronic data, but if this does not work, they will send a request for information to the member.

“This is where many people could get lost in the confusion, and lose coverage,” Farah Erzouki, senior policy analyst at CBPP, explains to Noticias Telemundo. Many families may have moved, and not receive the order, or not understand what they need to do. If they don’t reply in 30 daysThey lose insurance. Children may be eligible for other programs but miss out on this opportunity because of the complexity of the transition.

What to do to maintain the health benefits. The first step is to make sure the Government has your current contact information, such as your mailing address. Next, you should pay attention to letters or requests you receive and respond to them, explained advisers from Florida Covering Kids & Families, College of Public Health, at the University of South Florida (USF). Likewise, let Medicaid know if there are any changes in your household (such as changes in income).

You can also apply now for renewal if you meet the requirements, indicates the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. If you’re not eligible for Medicaid, you may be able to get other programs or ask for low-cost insurance on the Marketplace.

You can see what the process is like in each state on the page of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. There may also be community clinics, organizations or health departments in your area that can help you. The Covering Florida program offers help at no cost, for example, in Florida. You can also find counselors near you at Get Covered America .

How it can affect your immigration status . States generally do not require information on the immigration status or citizenship of beneficiaries during the health program renewal process, the CBPP experts indicate. In addition, Medicaid coverage and the health aid that families receive, especially those related to the pandemic (such as treatments, COVID-19 tests, and vaccines) are not negatively considered in immigration decisions or analyzed in the public charge rule. Only direct cash payments and long-term institutionalizations are considered, in a very limited number of cases.

To avoid massive loss of coverage
Beyond the small steps that families can take, experts point out that the greatest change can occur on the part of state administrations. The emergency is likely to last through at least mid-January 2023, CBPP experts say , so local agencies can plan ahead.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recommend that you focus your efforts on: improving your communication channels with beneficiaries, strengthening the renewal process, and ensuring that you can help those who are not eligible for Medicaid transition to other coverage.

Some have already started: Arkansas created a new call center and Tennessee launched a digital campaign, among other measures . California was the first to publish a plan, and others followed. “This transparency is essential,” said Farah Erzouki of the CBPP.

There are also important changes that legislators can make at the federal level, promoting, for example, the expansion of Medicaid.

A few days ago, Congress gave an example of the impact it can have: it approved a Biden package of economic and climate measures that includes changes that will help families. Drug prices will be negotiated and there will be a cap of $35 per month on the cost of insulin for Medicare beneficiaries and health care subsidies are extended to keep premiums low.

CDC Criticizes Itself For The Response To COVID-19

The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Rochelle Walensky, announced on Wednesday a profound restructuring that seeks to respond more quickly and effectively to health emergencies such as the coronavirus pandemic. “In our big time, our performance fell short of expectations,” she admitted in an exercise in self-criticism over the agency’s response to COVID-19 .

The adjustments announced by Walensky include internal personnel changes and measures to speed up the publication of health data. This is an initiative raised by the CDC, and not by the White House or other officials of the Joe Biden government, said the director.

“I feel responsible for renewing this agency after three really challenging years,” Walensky said in an interview with The Associated Press news agency.

The CDC, which is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, has a $12 billion budget and more than 11,000 employees. Its primary function is to protect citizens from disease outbreaks and other threats to public health.

Those who have run the agency have also implemented restructurings, but those announced by Walensky are expected to be even more profound given the severity of recent criticism.

The agency has been heavily criticized for its reactions in times of crisis, stopping to collect and analyze data, without acting promptly in the face of new health threats. Experts believe that the CDC was slow to know the extent of the infections in the first days of the pandemic, as well as to order the use of masks and to indicate health guidelines in general.

“During COVID-19 we saw that CDC structures were frankly not designed to digest information and share it with the public with the necessary speed,” said Jason Schwartz, a public health researcher at Yale University.

Walenski became director in January 2021, following Joe Biden’s arrival at the White House, almost a year after the start of the pandemic in March 2020; The first months of response thus corresponded to the team of former President Donald Trump.

From the beginning, he has repeatedly recognized that the agency needs to communicate in a more agile and assertive way, although several slips have occurred throughout his management.

Walenski requested in April an in-depth review of the organization, which has resulted in the changes now announced. His proposal must first be approved by Health Secretary Xavier Becerra, with the changes expected to be implemented in early 2023.

Some of the announced changes include:

Do not wait for the research to be approved in peer-reviewed journals to be able to act in some urgent cases.
Restructure the communications office and renew its websites.
Change the amount of time agency leaders spend on outbreak responses to a minimum of six months.
Create a new council to help the director set priorities.
Appoint Mary Wakefield as lead counselor to implement the changes.
Undo some of the changes that were made to the agency during the Trump administration.
Establish an intergovernmental affairs office to facilitate partnerships with other agencies.

Spain Triggers The Burning Of Russian Gas To Generate Energy

Spain is turning heavily to expensive natural gas to meet its energy needs, just as Europe struggles to cut consumption and avoid rationing . Gas demand for power generation increased 126% in July compared to the same month a year earlier, according to network operator Enagas. At the same time, imports of natural gas from Russia have grown by 32.9% (June data) , to 8,751 gigawatt hours (GWh), its highest monthly level since the Strategic Reserves of Petroleum Products Corporation ( Cores) has records, that is, 2004.

Combined heat and power generation, or CHP, which is capable of optimizing production by producing both electricity and thermal energy, accounted for just 4% of the country’s energy mix, down from 10% a year earlier.

CHP’s decline is putting pressure on industries, ranging from food and paper to refining and chemicals, that had invested in harnessing the technology. Meanwhile, this lower production is being compensated by a greater generation of less efficient and more polluting technologies, such as the combined cycle of gas and, to a lesser extent, coal.

“The situation is serious,” says Roger Medina, an economist at the Barcelona School of Economics. “A drop in CHP reduces efficiency, increases pollution and has a direct impact on industrial production,” in statements to the Bloomberg agency .

The share of combined cycle and coal in total Spanish electricity generation more than doubled in July, reaching 32% and 3.3%, respectively. All in all, CO2-emitting technologies represented 42% of the total mix in Spain, an increase of 11 percentage points compared to the same month of the previous year. The harsh drought that halved hydroelectric production also contributed to that trend.

Russian imports
On the other hand, imports appear. According to data published this Wednesday by Cores, Russia was Spain’s second largest supplier that month , being the origin of 24.4% of the gas received on those dates, only behind the 10,618 GWh from the United States, which was consolidated as main supplier, with 29.6% of the total.

According to the history by geographical areas and countries, the previous import record from Russia was set just one year earlier, in June 2021, when they reached 6,587 GWh, transported in the form of liquefied natural gas (LNG).

In the midst of the diplomatic crisis with Spain due to Madrid’s change of position regarding Western Sahara, Algeria was in third position, with 7,762 GWh, 21.6% of the total, although this volume was close to 53 % lower than the one registered a year before.

During June, imports of natural gas, regardless of origin, grew by 5.3%, to 35,883 GWh, of which 77% came as LNG, and the remaining 23% through gas pipelines.

LNG imports
The accumulated data also shows an unstoppable evolution of LNG imports, which allow the arrival of this raw material in ships, which have shot up nearly 67% in the first half of the year, coinciding with the growing weight of the United States .

In fact, North America represents 34% of the total imports made between January and June, according to Cores statistics, which places Russia as the fourth supplier so far this year.

Taking into account the total volume of these operations, Spain has imported 226,594 GWh in the first six months of the year, 13.9% more than in the same period of 2021.

Of this percentage, 73%, 165,868 GWh, came in the form of LNG through methane tankers, a formula that grew by 66.9% in year-on-year terms, while the rest, 60,726 GWh, came as natural gas, for gas pipeline, a technique that falls by 39%.

This evolution of the annual accumulated is explained by the diversification of the origins of this raw material, mainly originating in the United States in recent months, which has already sent 78,156 GWh to Spain in the first half.

Despite the political disagreements, the pre-existing contracts with Algeria keep this country as the second supplier in 2022, with 56,062 GWh, channeled, mostly, through a gas pipeline.

Following this are Nigeria, with 31,473 GWh, almost 50% more than in the first half of the previous year, and Russia, with 24,016 GWh, 12.2% more, in the middle of the critical scenario outlined in Europe as a result of the invasion of Ukraine.

Where do we export?
Natural gas exports also grew in June, by 6.1%, to 4,087 GWh, of which 80.7% was by gas pipeline and the remaining 19.3%, as LNG.

Once again, France was the main destination for exports, with 3,181 GWh, 77.8% of the total, and for the first time gas was brought to Morocco, 60 GWh.

In the annual accumulated, natural gas exports reach 29,996 GWh, after increasing by 99.3%.

Tips Of The OCU To Save With Your Fridge On The Electricity Bill

With the price of electricity through the roof (despite the positive effect of the Iberian exception) and in a context of skyrocketing inflation, citizens have to maximize consumption in their homes. And this forces us to take a look at our use of electrical appliances in our homes. Especially one of them, probably the most common, the fridge.

According to the Organization of Consumers and Users (OCU), the refrigerator consumes up to 31% of the daily energy that a household spends . It is the only appliance that has to be kept on all day and is especially necessary in summer, when the heat is on. For this reason, it is key to know how to optimize its use to save as much as possible on the electricity bill.

To achieve this, the OCU has drawn up a list on its website with tips for saving electricity by using the fridge and freezer efficiently .

Finding the best place for the fridge in the kitchen
Although it seems like a minor decision, the place in the kitchen where the refrigerator is placed can be key in energy consumption. The OCU advises not to install it near a heat source (next to an oven, an electric cooker…) and not in a sunny position either, since in those cases the refrigerator will have to use more energy to keep the food cool. suitable temperature.

In addition, it will also be useful if the refrigerator has some space around it. Not sticking the fridge to the wall or to a piece of furniture will also allow it to maintain the temperature more easily and, therefore, with less electricity consumption.

How to use the fridge well to save energy
The main thing is to keep the thermostat at a suitable temperature, which for the refrigerator should be around five degrees and for the freezer it should be around 18 degrees below zero. And, of course, don’t leave their doors open for a long time, otherwise they will lose the cold and have to spend more energy (which means more cat) to recover it.

And a piece of advice for these holidays: if you are going to leave the house for a long period of time, it is very convenient to empty the fridge, leave it clean and unplug it. It is the easiest way to avoid unnecessary spending on those days or weeks that will not be used and will help reduce the amount of the electricity bill.

Clean the fridge as a method to save on electricity
Oddly enough, proper cleaning of the fridge will also help this appliance to reduce electricity bill costs. The OCU recommends sweeping or vacuuming from behind so that dust does not hinder the passage of air and the exchange of hot air with outside air.

In parallel, it is also advisable to periodically defrost the refrigerator. The level of frost that it must have inside should not be too pronounced: the OCU explains that three millimeters accumulated on the walls implies an increase in energy consumption of up to 30%.

Store food properly in the fridge to save energy
Another aspect that seems irrelevant but that can help a lot in the electricity bill corresponding to the refrigerator is the correct placement of the food inside. The key is not to force this appliance to use more energy than is necessary to maintain the temperature inside.

In pursuit of this objective, it is highly recommended not to compress the food so that it can fit, but try to occupy the largest volume of the refrigerator. It is also a good option to distribute the food among the different trays and sections inside, taking advantage of the ‘freezer’ drawers for food that needs more cold.

Also, avoid putting hot food in both the fridge and the freezer. It usually happens when someone cooks and needs to store that food, but it is better to wait for it to cool down and then put it in the fridge.