U.S. utilities withdrew 51 Bcf natural gas from storage for the week ended March 18, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported Thursday. The result fell short of market expectations for a pull in the high 50s Bcf, but futures forged ahead regardless.

eia storage chart

Ahead of the EIA print, the April futures contract was down 7.3 cents at $5.159/MMBtu – after a three-day rally that sent futures to two-month highs. The prompt month ticked a touch lower to around $5.154 when the EIA data was released at 10:30 ET.

By 11 a.m. ET, however, futures were up 7.8 cents to $5.310.

[Want to visualize Henry Hub, Houston Ship Channel and Chicago Citygate prices? Check out NGI’s daily natural gas price snapshot now.]

“Temperatures were warmer than normal over the western, northern, and...