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Weather Outlook Turns Riskier; November Seen 4 Cents Lower

November natural gas is expected to open 4 cents lower Tuesday morning at $2.63 as traders assess a more uncertain weather environment and see Monday's market reaction as premature. Overnight oil markets rose.

Forecasters Monday adjusted their earlier prognostications to account for new data showing significantly cooler temperatures across much of the country, and that trend continued Tuesday, although uncertainty increased.

"[Tuesday's] six-10 day period forecast is cooler than yesterday's forecast across much of the West," said WSI Corp. in its Tuesday morning report. "Portions of the central and southern U.S. are warmer. PWCDDs are up 0.1 to 12.5. GWHDDs are down 0.9 to 27.4. Forecast confidence is back below average today due to ongoing uncertainty and model spread with the storm system along the East Coast and with a potential cut-off over the West.

"The forecast has room to swing in either direction given the uncertainty and model spread today. The Northeast and interior West have risks to the cooler side. The central U.S. has a slight upside risk."

Analysts see the market's reaction to Monday's forecasts as somewhat overdone. "Although overnight adjustments to the short-term temperature views aren't showing much change, it would appear that the market overreacted to a brief cold spell that is expected to cover a wide swath of the Midwest next week," said Jim Ritterbusch of Ritterbusch and Associates in Tuesday morning comments to clients.

"Below-normal temps in early October usually don't equate to significant elevation in HDDs and as a result, the adjusted temperature views aren't forcing much change in storage ideas across next month. Although this week's cool-down will likely take a triple-digit storage injection off the table within next week's EIA report, this Thursday's release will likely post a build slightly above the 100 Bcf mark

"The possibility of a triple-digit increase appears to be keeping the longs on the defensive for now. But at the same time, we still feel that the market has discounted an end-of-season supply of almost 4 Tcf and that additional downside price follow-through from current levels will prove limited."

Tom Saal, vice president at FC Stone Latin America LLC, in his work with Market Profile is looking for the market to test Monday's value area at $2.695 to $2.663 and then test a second value area at $2.632 to $2.612.

In overnight Globex trading November crude oil gained 74 cents to $45.17/bbl and November RBOB gasoline rose a penny to $1.3418/gal.

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