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Cooling Demand Lessens Slightly; October Seen 2 Cents Lower

October natural gas is set to open 2 cents lower Wednesday morning at $2.69 as overnight weather models showed a slight tempering of medium-term cooling requirements. Overnight oil markets softened.

Market technicians continue to look for an elusive price breakout, either higher or lower. "More congestion," said Brian LaRose, a market technician at United ICAP. "That means we are still stuck in neutral gear. Bears need to crack $2.624 to signal a further decline to $2.543, even $2.425-2.385 is possible from here.

"Bulls need to push natural gas up and over $2.871-2.881 to signal a seasonal advance of some degree may be taking hold. As long as natural gas is stuck between these levels, we are stuck sitting on our hands," he said in closing comments Tuesday.

Forecasters calculate a slight lessening in cooling requirements in the near term. "[Wednesday's] six-10 day period forecast is warmer than yesterday's forecast over the Plains, Midwest and Northeast. The West and South are cooler. As a result, PWCDDs are down 0.2 to 28.5 for the CONUS," said WSI Corp. in its morning report to clients.

"Forecast confidence is average today. Medium-range models are in better agreement with the progression of the large-scale pattern when compared to yesterday's runs. The West and north-central states have the greatest risk to the cooler side. The central and northern U.S. have a small upside risk."

Tom Saal, vice president at FC Stone Latin America LLC, in his work with Market Profile said to look for the market to test Tuesday's value area at $2.719 to $2.701. "Eventually" he expects the market to test a second value area at $2.812 to $2.774.

In overnight Globex trading October crude oil fell 60 cents to $45.34/bbl and October RBOB gasoline dropped a penny to $1.3922/gal.

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