Under the Electricity Restructuring Act, 2004, the Market Surveillance Panel was transferred from the IESO to the Ontario Energy Board (OEB). The MSP's mandate as set out in OEB By-law #3, includes: identifying inappropriate or anomalous market conduct by market participants, including gaming or abuse of market power
- identifying activities of the IESO that may have an impact on market efficiencies or effective competition
- identifying actual or potential design or other flaws and inefficiencies in the market rules or the structure of the IESO-administered markets; and
- assessing whether any one or more specific aspects of the underlying structure of the IESO-administered markets is consistent with the efficient and fair operation of a competitive market.
In 2005, the IESO and the OEB established a Protocol under which the IESO's Market Assessment Unit (MAU), within MACD, would continue to assist the MSP.
Memorandum of Understanding with Competition Bureau
The Market and Compliance Division has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Competition Bureau in support of increased cooperation and information sharing. The agreement helps ensure consumers are protected and businesses benefit from a fair and level playing field in Ontario’s electricity market.
The MOU enhances the IESO’s ability to monitor behaviour that exploits, manipulates or circumvents Ontario electricity market rules, and enforce compliance. Under the agreement the IESO and the Bureau will also coordinate joint education and advocacy activities.
The MSP relies on the MAU to monitor the market on a daily basis to identify inappropriate or anomalous conduct by market participants or other activities having an adverse impact on market efficiency or effective competition. The MSP issues its findings in its reports, published semi-annually on the OEB website: Panel Reports.
The MSP is empowered under the Electricity Act, 1998 to conduct investigations into any activity related to the IESO-administered markets or the conduct of a market participant.
Daily market monitoring is conducted by the Market Assessment Unit (MAU) on behalf of the MSP. Internal and external data is aggregated and reviewed on a frequent basis and constitutes the first step in assessing market activity and market participant conduct. The MAU has developed a number of queries to conduct more isolated screening and analysis of data and to help identify market trends.
MSP investigations may be launched on the initiative of the Panel, upon a request from the OEB Chair, or upon receipt of a written referral or complaint from any person. The procedure for requesting an MSP investigation is set out in OEB By-Law #3.
The outcomes of MSP investigations are reported publicly on the OEB website: Investigations and Reviews.
On an annual basis, the IESO reports to the OEB on the status of actions taken to address the recommendations of the MSP. See status update covering the period January 2015 - December 2019.
For inquiries about the MSP, its investigations or reports, contact the Ontario Energy Board at 416.481.1967 or toll-free 1.888.632.6273.