A glimmer of hope has emerged in the natural gas and oil industry, but commodity price forecasts still are uncertain because a price recovery will depend on the success of global stimulus packages that use energy as a driver, the pace of economic recovery and the magnitude of North American gas reserves, energy analysts said in new reports.
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After sinking below $11 and giving bears some glimmer of hope, June natural gas futures on Tuesday rebounded to record a high of $11.477 before closing out the regular session at $11.365, up 41.1 cents from Monday’s finish.
Breaking a five-session series of lower-lows and lower-highs, the natural gas futures market turned tentatively higher Wednesday as continued and steady end-user buying was enough to meet fund and commercial selling. Modest gains were seen throughout the six-year strip at Nymex and the September contract eked out a 0.9-cent advance to close Wednesday at $5.382.
After pressing lower at the open, natural gas futures rebounded modestly Tuesday as traders played it safe amid a changeable fundamental and technical landscape. However, even the late buying surge was not enough to propel prices above Monday’s close, leaving the January contract with its second-straight losing session. The prompt month closed at $2.563, down 7.1 cents. Estimated volume of 110,574 was extremely high considering the relatively small price move and the absence of market-maker Enron. Historically, natural gas averages a volume of about 75,000 contracts, and 100,000-plus volume days are usually only seen during the last three days before a contract expires.
The $19.1 billion spending bill for the Interior Department and related agencies that was signed by President Bush last week has left some offshore industry officials optimistic that the administration may consider expanded leasing in the eastern Gulf of Mexico (GOM) in the future.
The $19.1 billion spending bill for the Interior Department and related agencies that was signed by President Bush Monday has left some offshore industry officials optimistic that the administration may consider expanded leasing in the eastern Gulf of Mexico (GOM) in the future.
The fundamental of having snow and/or frigid temperaturescontinuing to pervade most markets was still around, but cashtraders must have been looking at hints that at least a moderatethaw might begin in several areas today. They again sent priceslower by about a dollar or more Wednesday in most cases.