Physical natural gas prices tumbled 8 cents overall in Wednesday’s trading as traders prepared for the Independence Day holiday, and many sections of the country expected to see mild weather. Nearly all points were in the red, and Northeast points bucked the downtrend, but a couple of points in the Marcellus suffered losses of over a dollar or more.
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A U.S. natural gas storage surplus of 463 Bcf on Feb. 15 had tumbled to a 32 Bcf deficit by May 24, a 495 Bcf decline that “ranks among the strongest we have seen, and oddly, the timing was in the late winter and early spring,” analysts at Stephen Smith Energy Associates said in their most recent Monthly Energy Outlook.
Cash prices tumbled an average of about a half-dollar Wednesday, led by free-falling multi-dollar drops in New England and other eastern and Northeast points. If those extra-volatile points are removed from the calculations, the overall average drop was of nearly a quarter.
Corridor Resources Inc. and partner Petrolia Inc. are conducting a three-part exploration program on Anticosti Island in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence to advance the “exploration and development potential of the vast shale oil prospect” on the 3,050 square-mile island, Corridor said.
The cash market for weekend and Monday delivery overall tumbled on average of just over a dime Friday as traders cited a lack of weekend demand and Monday temperatures in key metropolitan areas were forecast to reach no more than seasonal norms. Most points were lower, but California points were particularly hard hit.
Cash market prices overall tumbled just above 8 cents Wednesday as traders noted a market lacking bids. An outage lifted Florida Gas Transmission into the plus column, but Gulf, West Coast, and Rockies points all slid close to a dime.
January natural gas tumbled 6.3 cents Monday, as traders look for some semblance of price support amid an unfavorable technical and fundamental setting. At the close January had fallen 6.3 cents to $3.254 and February had retreated 5.9 cents to $3.294. January crude oil dropped $1.64 to $97.77/bbl.
Natural gas production from the nation’s shale plays now accounts for more than one-quarter of U.S. production, compared with 5% in 2007, and is helping to keep gas prices among the lowest in a decade, according to FERC’s Office of Enforcement (OE).
August natural gas futures tumbled Thursday following the release of inventory data showing greater-than-expected increases. For the week ended July 1, the Energy Information Administration reported a build of 95 Bcf, about 10 to 15 Bcf greater than what traders were expecting. Prices quickly obliged following the 10:30 a.m. EDT report and by the close August futures had declined 8.4 cents to $4.133 and September had jettisoned 8.4 cents as well to $4.138. August crude oil soared $2.02 to $98.67/bbl.