North American natural gas futures for the upcoming winter steadied mid-week at the prospect of cooler weather but have slumped since the start of the month and sit below the $4 mark. The January Nymex gas futures contract settled Wednesday at $3.815/MMBtu, up 10.7 cents day/day. February climbed 10.0 cents to $3.774.


“Consumers who pay a monthly price want to throw themselves out of the window in the face of falling prices,” said a natural gas shipper in Mexico City. 

Many natural gas buyers in Mexico have switched to monthly deals as a way to hedge against spot market volatility. Mexico relies on imports from the United States to meet more than 90% of domestic demand, excluding gas consumed by state oil company Petróleos Mexicanos.

After months of concern in Mexico...