The futures market came under hefty selling pressure right fromthe outset Tuesday, as the market put aside hurricane fears toconcentrate on the overall bearish outlook for natural gas. TheSeptember contract sustained the largest losses, slipping 9.8 centsto settle at $1.828 for the day.

Storage and weather were once again cited as a reasons for theweakness with traders looking ahead to this afternoon’s release ofthe AGA storage report. Market estimates call for an injection inthe 70-90 Bcf range which would easily eclipse last year’s 65refill, despite continued above normal air-conditioning load,sources said.

However, fundamentals alone may not be responsible for Tuesday’ssoftening. Tom Saal of Pioneer Futures in Miami, feels the Octobercontract was the key to the downturn yesterday. Saal said onceSeptember broke below support at $1.88 the fund groups stepped inand sold the October contract. October dropped down to a low of$1.845 before settling at $1.857. Saal feels the bears next targetfor October is $1.82 level, pointing to the existence of standingsell orders waiting to be executed if the market breaks below thatlevel.

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