A continuation of recent cold trends in forecasts for late October supported natural gas futures in early Wednesday trading. The November Nymex contract was trading 1.1 cents higher at $2.350/MMBtu at around 8:40 a.m. ET.
Small but colder-leaning changes to the weather models overnight led Bespoke Weather Services early Wednesday to add to its gas-weighted degree day expectations for the 11-15 day time frame.
“We continue to see solid support for the building of a West Coast upper level ridge, sending a colder trough downstream first into the middle of the nation next week, then spreading eastward next weekend into the following week,” Bespoke said. Forecasters also reported some negative North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) “blocking showing up on the Atlantic side, assisting in the colder move.
“The question now centers on two key items. One, will the cold look as solid once it rolls into the six- to 10-day period? We do think it should, as the signal looks quite strong, and supported by what we see in tropical forcing.”
The other key will be whether the cold extends into November, the forecaster said, adding that it remains unconvinced the pattern will last “deep into the month.”
Maxar’s Weather Desk similarly noted a continuation of colder trends in its latest 11-15 day projections Wednesday.
“The northern Atlantic pattern has shifted significantly during this period in the past few days, and today’s models continue the trend for a more prominent negative NAO response,” Maxar said. “As a result, the forecast is additionally cooler during the second half of the period.”
The forecaster said the pattern points to below normal temperatures across most of the eastern half of the Lower 48.
“There remains a large difference in the amount of cool air supply based on the models,” with Maxar’s forecast “taking a middle ground approach.”
The prospect of colder weather arriving later this month into early November helped the front month break through resistance at $2.32 Tuesday, according to analysts at EBW Analytics Group. Compared to Tuesday’s outlook, the latest forecasts led the firm to add roughly 11 Bcf of projected demand cumulatively over the next three Energy Information Administration (EIA) storage weeks.
“With the potential for EIA to report another 100 Bcf-plus injection Thursday, the November contract is likely to stop short of the next major resistance point at $2.40 in today’s trading,” the EBW analysts said. If the forecasts for colder weather for the week of Oct. 25-31 “continue to hold and start to extend” beyond that point, “the November contract could challenge resistance at $2.51 later this month.”
November crude oil futures were trading about 19 cents higher at around $53.00/bbl as of 8:40 a.m. ET, while November RBOB gasoline was trading fractionally lower at around $1.6126/gal.