Natural gas futures probed modestly higher early Wednesday as traders awaited the latest government inventory data, a potentially pivotal follow-up to the decidedly bearish result from last week’s release.

The December Nymex contract was up 3.2 cents to $2.878/MMBtu at around 8:42 a.m. ET.

The December contract posted a fourth consecutive daily decline on Tuesday, dropping 3.6 cents as traders continued to weigh potential oversupply amid estimates showing soaring production numbers.

“The Nymex front month is now down 72.9 cents (minus 20.4%) November-to-date — and the forward curve may have further to fall with the medium-term fundamental outlook bearish relative to current prices,” EBW Analytics Group analyst Eli Rubin told clients early Wednesday. “In the...