Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Natural Gas Futures Hit 9-Week High

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Natural Gas Futures Hit 9-Week High

Article excerpt

NEW YORK -- Natural gas futures rose to a nine-week high after an unexpectedly large drop in storage levels and prospects for colder weather.

U.S. natural gas inventories fell to 836 billion cubic feet last week after 16 bcf was withdrawn, the American Gas Association said after trading ended Wednesday. The report surprised most analysts who expected an increase of about 10 bcf.

"Storage holders are withdrawing gas when they probably should be injecting," said Al Lindseth, an analyst at GSC Energy Corp. in Atlanta. Also, there is some concern that cold weather will boost demand, he said. Natural gas for May delivery at the Henry Hub in Louisiana rose 6.4 cents to settle at $2.069 for each million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the highest for a contract nearest to expiration since Feb. 12. Below-normal temperatures are expected to engulf the eastern half of the U.S. during April 22 to April 26, the National Weather Service said in its latest forecast. Colder weather, particularly in the U.S. Midwest, could provide a boost to gas-related heating demand, traders said, even though average temperatures are much warmer now than they were in the middle of winter. "It's supposed to be chilly from Louisiana to the Canadian border over the next five days or so," said Lindseth. Although natural gas inventories fell last week, they remain 53 percent higher than a year earlier, a reflection that heating demand hasn't been as strong this winter. Demand is currently at a lull and should improve part-way through the summer when more home-owners begin using air-conditioners, thereby increasing electricity and natural gas consumption. Crude oil futures were little changed as traders await news from Venezuelan oil tanker pilots who are meeting with government officials in an attempt to avoid a strike planned for late Sunday or Monday. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.