Following a frenetic week of April trading featuring near20-cent price swings and unusually high volume in both futures andcash markets, Monday’s market exhibited a calmness that remindedtraders April is a shoulder month. But, regardless of the smalllosses and lack of excitement generated yesterday, prices are stillat their highest levels since the December bidweek and as much as80 cents above year ago levels.
A Midcontinent trader noted that although nearly all pipestraded in a tight 5-cent range on Monday, there was definitely apecking order among the pipes. “NGPL and ANR SW were the strongpipes this morning, Panhandle Eastern lagged a penny or so, and ONGand Williams didn’t see much higher than the mid-$2.30s.” Hecontinued that the ONG system is long on gas and there are fewoptions for moving gas off-system.
Another Midcontinent trader was working the storage spreads.”April gas was trading at an attractive discount to May. The spreadwas working so we were out buying April and selling May.”
A Chicago marketer views Monday’s market as “nothing more thana bit of consolidation in a longer term uptrend.” In the shortterm, however, we could see some softening before continuing toplod higher.”
Western markets were more subdued than usual with an El Pasoshippers meeting in San Antonio taking a number of participants outof the market. Cooler than normal temperatures in the Rockies areproviding enough demand “in an already short market” to keep pricesfrom slipping.
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