The first day of January’s natural gas bidweek brought soaring baseload prices for Western Lower 48 hubs and healthy premiums for East Coast markets, according to NGI’s Bidweek Alert.

Fixed prices at SoCal Citygate were seen in the $60-$61/MMBtu range on day one of bidweek trading Friday. Farther north, Northwest Sumas fixed prices ranged from $46 to $53.50.

Western markets have been no stranger to price spikes this season; the West Coast bore the brunt of wintry weather during an otherwise mild start to December for the Lower 48, one of a number of factors that have contributed to elevated physical market prices out West this month.

Regional storage dynamics help to shed light on the elevated pricing observed in the West during the winter so far. For the week ended Dec....