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Electricity Monthly Update

With Data for April 2014  |  Release Date: June 23, 2014  |  Next Release Date: July 25, 2014   |   Revision

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End Use: April 2014


Retail rates/prices and consumption

In this section, we look at what electricity costs and how much is purchased. Charges for retail electric service are based primarily on rates approved by state regulators. However, a number of states have allowed retail marketers to compete to serve customers and these competitive retail suppliers offer electricity at a market-based price.

EIA does not directly collect retail electricity rates or prices. However, using data collected on retail sales revenues and volumes, we calculate average retail revenues per kWh as a proxy for retail rates and prices. Retail sales volumes are presented as a proxy for end-use electricity consumption.

Average revenue per kWh by state



In April, nearly all states had higher average revenue per kWh figures compared to last April. Rhode Island had the highest year-over-year average revenue per kWh increase at just over 21%, followed by Kentucky, up nearly 14%, Louisiana, up almost 12%, and Massachusetts, up just over 10%.

California, West Virginia and Montana were the only states to have lower average revenue per kWh figures compared to last April, with Vermont and Arizona both flat. California had by far the largest decrease at over 11% from last year. West Virginia had a year-over-year decrease of close to 4%, and Montana was down almost 2%.

Total average revenues per kilowatthour averaged 10.01 cents in April, 3.5% higher than April 2013, though down from 10.32 cents in March. All sectors increased, with the commercial sector up 4.4% to 10.4 cents per kilowatthour, the industrial sector up 3.4% to 6.75 cents per kilowatthour, the residential sector up 3.2% to 12.31 cents per kilowatthour, and the transportation sector up 1.1% to 10.06 cents per kilowatthour.

Total retail sales volumes decreased 0.8% from last April, totaling 272,863 GWh based on a large drop in the residential sector. Weather sensitive residential volumes fell 3.3% this April from last year, totaling 92,188 GWh. The other sectors were either up for the month, with the transportation sector up 1.8% to 634 GWh and the commercial sector up 1% to 102,403 GWh, or flat, as the industrial sector remained at roughly 77,638 GWh in April.

Retail sales



Similar to last month, electric industry retail sales volume trends varied widely state-by-state and across regions. The largest volume increase was found in an upper Midwestern state, with North Dakota up 8.7% from last April, likely on the back of increased economic activity. Retail sales were also up in the Mid-Atlantic, with the District of Columbia up just over 8% and in Northeastern states, with New Jersey up 4.6% and Maine up 4.2%. California and Utah retail sales were up almost 3%.

As has been the case for many months, Kentucky had the largest decrease of any state, down over 20%, as the closure of a large energy consumer last year, the United States Enrichment Corporation facility in Paducah, Kentucky, continues to affect year-over-year comparisons. Illinois and Missouri were also down more than 5% this April when compared to a year ago.


Heating degree days (HDDs) were down this April across most of the country when compared to one year ago. Louisiana, down 32%, and Texas, down 31%, had the greatest declines. Kentucky, Oklahoma, Kansas and Alaska also had HDD declines greater than 25%.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Florida had an HDD increase of 23%, though that number is exaggerated due to the very small number of HDDs that typically occur in Florida in April. The District of Columbia, up 14%, and Delaware, up 11%, had the next highest levels of HDD increases in April compared to last year.

HDD comparisons to long-term normal levels this month show continued cold weather in the upper Midwest, which dealt with one of the coldest winters on record. Although, April 2013 was cooler than this April. The four states with the greatest increase in HDDs from normal in April were, in order: Minnesota, North Dakota, Wisconsin and Iowa. The greatest decreases in HDD levels from normal were found clustered in the Southwest (Nevada and Arizona) and California, and in the region around Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia.

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