Energy transition, financial markets and new EU interventionism

In times of greater government interference with economic markets, this paper studies the conditions under which energy markets listen to policymakers and what implications these have for climate change and the energy transition. Building on the case of EU industrial policy announcements in the aftermath of the Russian invasion into Ukraine, we theorize that different types of policy announcements will affect investment and capital (re)allocation decisions in energy markets and that some of them may have had hopeful implications for green energy companies, if only for a short amount of time. Consistent with expectations, our event analysis finds stronger effects of EU policy announcements on stock market returns for renewables energy producers than for their fossil fuel competitors. However, these effects dissipated quickly. Our findings have implications for research on European politics, climate policies as well as for political economy scholars studying credible communication between policymakers and firms.