Bound by the rules

In his last day in office, Governor Gray Davis announced the Californian energy crisis was over. Revelations from indicted traders, and the punishments doled out to them, will have a profound effect on how the market moves forward. By Catherine Lacoursierè

Two years after the California spot market was shut down amid allegations ofwidespread manipulation and gaming strategies in the wholesale electricity markets,Californians will enter the New Year with a new set of rules governing electricitytrading. After several years and cadres of regulators, lawyers and investigatorsunravelling the California energy crisis of 2000 and 2001, would-be market manipulatorswill face strong new deterrents in 2004.

Investigations into the crisis, in which

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