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Is the Weather a Turning Point for the Natural Gas Market?

PART:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Part 3
Is the Weather a Turning Point for the Natural Gas Market? PART 3 OF 8

US Natural Gas Inventories Rose in February

EIA’s natural gas inventories  

The EIA (U.S. Energy Information Administration) released its weekly natural gas inventory report on March 2, 2017. It reported that US natural gas inventories rose by 7 Bcf (billion cubic feet) to 2,363 Bcf from February 17–24, 2017. It’s the first time that weekly US natural gas inventories rose in February since 1994. A mild winter led to the rise in the natural gas inventories at this time of the year.

However, US natural gas inventories hit 4,047 Bcf for the week ending November 11, 2016—the highest level ever. Moves in inventories impact natural gas (DGAZ) (UNG) (GASL) prices. For more on natural gas prices and the weather, read Part 1 and Part 2 of this series.

US Natural Gas Inventories Rose in February

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A market survey estimated that US natural gas inventories would have fallen by 4 Bcf from February 17–24, 2017. Natural gas (FCG) (BOIL) prices rose on March 2, 2017, despite the surprise rise in natural gas inventories. For more on prices, read Part 1 of this series.

The five-year average natural gas withdrawal for this period is 132 Bcf. Natural gas inventories fell by 48 Bcf during the same period in 2016. They fell by 89 Bcf in the week ending February 17, 2017.

What’s the impact? 

For the week ending February 24, 2017, US natural gas inventories are 14.3% higher than their five-year average. High inventories and a mild winter could pressure natural gas prices. For more on the weather, read the previous part of the series.

Volatility in natural gas prices impacts oil and gas producers’ profitability such as Southwestern Energy (SWN), WPX Energy (WPX), and EXCO Resources (XCO).

Next, we’ll take a look at US natural gas inventories by region. We’ll also look at the US natural gas inventory forecast for March 2017.

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