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Energy markets have gotten more volatile and harder to predict

Power lines in California. Photo: George Rose / Getty Images

Oil, gas and electricity markets in the U.S. showed more yearly volatility and proved tougher for Energy Department analysts to predict from 2005 to 2014 compared to preceding decades, new research published in the journal Nature Energy shows.

Why it matters: The results underscore the challenges facing policymakers, and companies making investment decisions that "influence the cost, and environmental and health impacts of the US energy system for decades," the paper states.