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Spain electricity demand slumps 3.7 pct in October

Source: Reuters - Tue 1st Nov 2011

Demand for electricity in major gas importer Spain fell by 3.7% in October year-on-year after a fall of 1.3% in September, national grid manager REE said on Tuesday.

The data echoed a report by Spain's central bank on Monday that domestic demand had slumped, which has led some economists to predict the economy may enter a recession in the final thee months of the year.

REE added in a monthly report that demand in the first 10 months of 2011 had declined by 0.5% year-on-year.

For the first 8 months through August, Spain's demand for power had grown, albeit at a slowing rate.

Renewable energy sources accounted for 32.1% of all electricity generated for the January-October period, down from 35.1% a year earlier, a factor which has buoyed wholesale power prices.

The data also showed that coal provided more electricity than gas for a second straight month and for only the second time since 2007.

Spain is normally the world's eighth-largest importer of natural gas in the world and the fourth-largest of liquefied natural gas, but demand has slumped this year because it has been cheaper for power utilities to burn coal.

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