Natural gas futures rebounded in early trading Tuesday as the latest forecasts teased the possibility of a return to colder temperatures and higher heating demand later this month. The December Nymex contract was up 15.6 cents to $5.342/MMBtu at around 8:45 a.m. ET.
The latest 15-day forecast from Bespoke Weather Services trended warmer overall in terms of total projected gas-weighted degree days, but this “does not tell the full story,” according to the firm.
“We see changes around the middle of the month in the projected pattern that suggest there is risk to move back colder down the road, as a new eastern U.S. trough arrives on the scene underneath a redeveloping block in the North Atlantic,” Bespoke said. “While we have discussed the possibility of colder variability later in the month, the pattern seems to be evolving faster, both with the speeding up of the warming in the wake of this week’s colder days and now the possible turn back colder later in the month.”
Should this turn colder continue to roll forward in the projection period, prices would be poised to continue climbing from current levels, according to the firm. However, “any delay or failure to roll forward would increase the risk of at least testing yesterday’s lows.”
After Monday’s 24.0-cent slide, there were “no obvious signs of bottoming action,” ICAP Technical Analysis analyst Brian LaRose told clients.
Bulls will need to “stage an intervention from the $5.070 vicinity to start the day” or else “we will be taking aim at lower prices,” LaRose said. The analyst pegged the next band of support at $4.758-4.685.
Meanwhile, looking ahead to this week’s U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) storage report, NGI’s machine learning model is calling for a 68 Bcf injection for the week ended Oct. 29. That would easily exceed both the year-earlier injection of 27 Bcf and the five-year average 38 Bcf build.
Energy Aspects issued a preliminary estimate of 66 Bcf for the upcoming report.
“Growing heating demand will continue to cut the injection rate as the heating season draws nearer, but 0.8 Bcf/d of week/week production gains will add some support to late-season injections,” the firm said. “Flows indicate Haynesville Shale output rose by 0.5 Bcf/d week/week, with Appalachia and the Gulf of Mexico each adding 0.2 Bcf/d week/week as well.”
December Nymex crude oil futures were off 34 cents to $83.71/bbl at around 8:45 a.m. ET.
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