It took FERC only a few days to recognize that ANR PipelineCo.’s March 8 application for a second Wisconsin expansion projectin 18 months fails to meet the Commission’s test for showing marketneed.
Articles from Took
The surprisingly small storage withdrawal last week of 69 Bcf,as reported late Wednesday by the American Gas Association, tookthe blame for a 12.1-cent tumble in the April Henry Hub futurescontract yesterday. Most observers were expecting about 110 Bcf tobe withdrawn, so the AGA report was enough to trigger along-awaited correction. Heavy selling sent the front-month Nymexgas futures contract cascading down throughout the day to a low of$1.810 before closing at $1.820.
Columbia Energy took a hit last week as the Michigan AttorneyGeneral stepped in to halt a misleading marketing effort by thecompany. Due to an objection by the Attorney General over thewording in a mail solicitation sent to Michcon pilot programcustomers, Columbia has consented to end the solicitation and givecustomers the option to choose other suppliers. Currently, Columbiahas signed 12,200 customers away from Michcon.
Columbia Energy took a hit Wednesday as the Michigan AttorneyGeneral stepped in to halt one of Columbia’s marketing efforts. Dueto an objection by the Attorney General over the wording in a mailsolicitation sent to Michcon pilot program customers, Columbia hasconsented to end the solicitation and offer any customer it hassigned to an out. Currently, Columbia has signed 12,200 customersaway from Michcon.
Despite strong performance by TransCanada’s transmissionbusiness, like most everyone else the company took a hit toyear-end earnings due to flagging commodity prices. TransCanadareported net earnings before unusual charges of $575 million 1998,down 8% from $620 million for fiscal 1997. Net earnings afterunusual charges, for the year ended Dec. 31, 1998 were $355 millioncompared to $522 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 1997.
Bearish fundamental factors once again took over at the New YorkMercantile Exchange Tuesday, sending the natural gas futures marketspiraling lower and nearly erasing gains registered over the priorthree trading sessions. Even cash prices, which continued to spikedramatically higher yesterday, did not influence the futuresmarket. After January opened below key support, the market neverlooked back as prices fell 18.8 cents to $1.913 at the closeTuesday. And just like that, the futures-cash basis has shrunk froma whopping 97 cents to a tight 14 cents over the past two days.
The cash market took a bit of a breather Friday from the uphillclimb that began last Tuesday. Weekend quotes ranged from minimallyhigher to nearly a dime lower, with most of the softnessconcentrated in the Midcontinent, Midwest citygates, Southwestbasins, northern and southern California borders and intra-Alberta.
Advanced turbine systems (ATS), including microturbines, andfuel cells, took the top dollars in the Department of Energyresearch, development and demonstration budget for FY99, accordingto a budget assessment by the American Gas Association. Overall,AGA estimated DOE’s research funding for natural gas set a newrecord at $246 million. That’s up from the $209 million in thisyear’s budget.
Change in the electric industry will mirror what took place inthe gas industry following deregulation and the introduction ofcompetition, particularly with regard to trading, Enron PresidentJeffrey K. Skilling told attendees at Ernst & Young LLP’s ninthannual Energy Conference last week in Houston.
Bulls and bears took turns influencing futures yesterday as themarket trended higher throughout regular pit trading, only to dropright back down to near unchanged in last night’s Access session.As is the case on any Wednesday, the price catalyst came in theform of the weekly AGA storage report released at the beginning ofAccess trading. The November contract experienced the largest priceswings of the strip, settling up 4.7 cents to $2.393 beforeretracing 3.3 cents lower to $2.36.