Except for continued major recoveries by Rockies points from the sub-dollar depths to which they had sunk Monday, there was little price movement in the cash market Wednesday. Rockies gains ranged from about 70 cents to more than $1.50, with only Kern River not realizing an increase of a dollar or more. Elsewhere flat numbers were common and very few points moved either up or down by more than a dime.
The outlook for power generation load to meet air conditioning demand remains spotty. It remains solid across the southern third of the U.S. with daily highs regularly hitting 90 or above, and the Midcontinent is getting in on the act with a high of 92 forecast for Oklahoma City Thursday. The Midwest is developing a limited amount of cooling load. Highs are predicted to reach the low 90s in Chicago Thursday, but farther north they are due to hit only the low to mid 80s in Minneapolis and Detroit.
The Northeast is comfortably cool for the most part, with Boston and New York City expected to peak Thursday in the low 70s and mid 70s, respectively. However, Philadelphia is due to nudge the mercury into the low 80s.
There is a bit of heating demand in the West, but it is in sparsely populated areas such as the northern Rockies, where lows in the 30s are forecast. But California's Central Valley will climb into the 80s, The Weather Channel said, and desert Southwest temperatures will continue to reach the mid 90s, even though that is subpar for a region that regularly tops 100 in the summer.
Wednesday's cash market had negative guidance from the 12.7-cent drop by July futures Tuesday. Thursday's trading will have some support, but not much, after a scant 1.6-cent screen rally Wednesday.
Florida Gas Transmission kept an Overage Alert Day for market-area customers in place for the third straight day Wednesday. Florida Gas Zone 3 was the strongest point in Louisiana with the gain of a dime to just shy of $8.
Go figure. Malin and the PG&E citygate were flat to slightly higher on Tuesday when the utility's California Gas Transmission system had a high-inventory OFO in effect for the following day. The OFO was lifted for Thursday, but the two pricing points were either flat (Malin) or down nearly a nickel (citygate) Wednesday.
A Midcontinent producer said a lot of recent rain coupled with rising heat levels should keep both humidity rates and power demand high in his area for a good while.
Bentek Energy expects a storage injection of 106 Bcf to be reported for the week ending June 1.
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