Below are Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) and the relevant answers.
Why aren’t tomorrow’s Agile pricing there by 4:15pm?
Octopus Energy rely on data from other sources (like day ahead wholesale energy costs, see below) so that they can build their own consumer pricing, ie the 30 min Agile data for the next day.
On 9 out of 10 days Octopus automatically receive the data from the third-party at 4pm and are then able to release the prices almost immediately after. The data they are waiting for is the result of the online auction for the next day’s pricing.
But on the rare days when they don’t get the data at 4pm it could well be a few hours until prices are released. The latest I can remember is around 9pm.
My site checks for new data every 10 minutes, processes as soon as it finds it and tweets out the daily graph.
Just a case of sitting tight. …… and hitting F5 / refresh! 🙂
While you wait, why not read Octopus blog “The challenges of working on the cutting edge of smart energy” that explains the challenges faced.
Finally, just remember what Octopus told us when we all signed up……
Agile Octopus is a beta product. If you’re OK that some things may not work first time, that installations and processes may take longer than we’d like, and you’d like to work with us to make world-changing energy tariffs a reality………
How do Agile Price Plunges happen?
Octopus Energy explained this in a blog posted April 2020. You can read all about it here: https://octopus.energy/blog/social-distancing-renewable-energy-negative-pricing/
You can also find when all the previous Price Plunges that have occurred on our Agile Price Plunges page.
How do Octopus Energy calculate Agile pricing?
Octopus apply a wildly complicated formula to underlying wholesale energy prices.
You can read all about the formula on their blog post: https://octopus.energy/blog/agile-pricing-explained/
Then, from Octopus Energy terms and conditions they have cited the source of the wholesale prices:
We take wholesale electricity prices from www.nordpoolgroup.com/Market-data1/GB/Auction-prices/UK/Daily/?view=table and wholesale gas prices from www.marexspectron.com/intelligence/indices/historical-index every day. In the event these indices are not available we reserve the right to use an alternative publicly available source of market data.
So there you go, in theory you should be able to come to the same pricing using the underlying data and applying the formula. Much fun for nerds!!
Why do Agile prices only go up to 11pm?
The answer to this one can be found in the Developer API documentation: https://developer.octopus.energy/docs/api/
If you’re using this API to query future unit-rates of the Agile Octopus product, note that day-ahead prices are normally created by 4pm in the Europe/London timezone.
Further, the market index used to calculate unit rates is based in the CET timezone (UTC+1) and so its “day” corresponds to 11pm to 11pm in UK time. Hence, if you query today’s unit rates before 4pm, you’ll get 46 results back rather than 48.
Another mystery solved!!
How are the daily graph colours decided?
Since the first every daily tweet from the @energystatsuk Twitter account in November 2019 there have been a few changes to the look and feel of the graph.
The latest incarnation and last code change was August 2020 when I added colours that are based on unit price.
For those that are interested, here’s the unit pricing/colour code from my script.
if val < 0: col.append('#0d6aff') # dark blue if val >=0 and val < 5: col.append('#5ad346') # dark green if val >= 5 and val <8: col.append('#94d963') # medium green if val >= 8 and val <11: col.append('#bcd573') # light green if val >= 11 and val <20: col.append('#ec8f62') # orange-ish if val >= 20: col.append('#e56249') # red
There are no standards to adhere to when it comes to colours, everyone will have their own view of where the boundaries lie.
After quite a bit of tinkering during development these are just what I landed upon as they look right to me.
If you find this information useful and are thinking of joining Octopus Energy, please consider using my referral code to help support running costs of the website.
Using this referral code will gift you £50 of free credit after signup: https://share.octopus.energy/linen-pearl-869
If you’re considering owning part of a wind farm through Ripple Energy, get £25 of free credit (if investing more than £250) using my Ripple referral link.
We can also be found on Twitter, please follow us @energystatsuk for daily Agile tariff pricing graphs and summaries.
Note: The past performance of energy pricing is not necessarily a guide to the future.