Wednesday’s cash market was almost a carbon copy ofTuesday’s-flat to about a nickel higher at the great majority ofpoints but going lower in the Rockies. About the only differencewas in California numbers, which were flat to slightly higherWednesday instead of joining the Rockies in softening.

Intra-Alberta was among the strongest markets with an uptick ofabout a dime into the mid C$2.00s, although it was quite volatile,a marketer said. It started around C$2.05, then dipped to justunder C$2 before recovering into the low $2.10s, she said. Manyplant turnarounds just don’t seem to be ending as soon asscheduled, so field receipts are lower than expected, the marketersaid. In addition, every time serious storage injections getstarted, NOVA gets low on linepack, she added.

An Oklahoma trader sees strong fundamentals sticking around fora while, pointing to private forecasts calling for continued hotweather in Oklahoma and Texas through at least July 3. That meanshigh electric generation load isn’t going to fade anytime soon. Inaddition, he said, little or no rain relief is predicted, and thereis additional gas buying associated with irrigation operations forcrops.

One trader expects Texas to start getting some competition forsupply from the West as Southern California is due to heat up. Thatcould cause some Waha/Permian gas to seek a westerly home insteadof going to the Texas intrastate market, he said. Another factorencouraging shippers to go west with Permian gas is a restrictionon Oasis Pipeline related to line work and tie-ins that ispreventing about 450 MMcf/d from reaching Katy.

A Canadian source detected another bullish sign, saying she hadheard East Coast electric prices were soaring out of sight. Shealso noted that the AGA storage injection report of 82 Bcf waslower than many had expected, “so I don’t think the screen willcrash” before expiry.

Except for indexed and basis activity, July business is stillsluggish, although a source did report doing a Malin deal at $1.89Wednesday. Another trader said the Rockies market appears to begetting weaker as he was getting bids in the mid $1.60s Wednesday,compared to the mid to high $1.70s being reported Tuesday. A thirdsource was seeing “very weak demand” in California, saying therewere more sellers than buyers for both June and July.

A marketer said Michigan and Chicago basis positions haveflip-flopped, pegging Chicago at plus 6-7 but MichCon at only plus4-5. His explanation for MichCon being weaker was that Dawn storageis close to full, and that is reducing traders’ flexibility ofselling into the Michigan citygate. Another trader said ConsumersPower basis was virtually identical to MichCon’s at plus 4.5 , butadded that was down 2 cents from Tuesday. Other basis talk includedTransco Station 30 at minus 6; Transco Station 45 at minus 1.5;Transco Station 65 at plus 0.5; NGPL-Louisiana at minus 4; ANRSouthwest at minus 10.75; and Transok at minus 8.5. A marketer wasseeing general Midcontinent basis of minus 8-11 except for astronger NorAm-east. ONG was the strongest of the pack at minus 8,he said, while NGPL-Midcontinent buyers were pushing basis there tominus 11.

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