Natural gas March futures closed at $6.09 per MMBtu on February 19 and went even higher afterwards before falling once again. This could seem like a dramatic rise and psychological threshold for natural gas prices, but there are some important facts to keep in mind for context. First, it has been a very cold winter with persistent low temperatures. Records for highest month, week and day for total natural gas consumption were in January.
This January also saw the highest winter-month electricity load, ever. For its part, natural gas volumes to power generation for a January were the highest ever recorded, also. February natural gas demand is 8.6 percent above last year while storage volumes are 35 percent below the five-year average. With that said, winter price movements have been muted compared to history when similar piled-on events have occurred. What then is our takeaway? That the nation’s natural gas supply portfolio, so far, has handled persistent cold and major weather events very well.
Visit this link to download the full Natural Gas Market Indicators report. Topics covered in this week’s report include: Reported Prices, Weather, Working Gas in Underground Storage, Natural Gas Production, Shale Gas, Rig Counts, Pipeline Imports and Exports, and LNG Markets.