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Supply and Demand Could Drive Natural Gas Prices Higher

PART:
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Part 3
Supply and Demand Could Drive Natural Gas Prices Higher PART 3 OF 6

US Natural Gas Inventories Are 3% above Their 5-Year Average

EIA’s natural gas inventories 

The EIA (U.S. Energy Information Administration) released its weekly natural gas storage report on August 3, 2017, at 10:30 AM EST. The EIA reported that US natural gas inventories rose by 20 Bcf (billion cubic feet) to 3,010 Bcf on July 21–28, 2017. Inventories rose 0.7% week-over-week but fell 8.5% or by 278 Bcf year-over year.

A market survey estimated that US natural gas inventories would have risen by 21 Bcf on July 21–28, 2017. US natural gas prices fell on August 3, 2017, due to the rise in natural gas (FCG) (BOIL) (GASL) inventories.

Lower natural gas prices have a negative impact natural gas producers like Southwestern Energy (SWN), WPX Energy (WPX), Gulfport Energy (GPOR), and Newfield Exploration (NFX).

US Natural Gas Inventories Are 3% above Their 5-Year Average

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Historical averages 

US natural gas inventories rose by 6 Bcf for the same period in 2016. For natural gas inventories, the five-year average rise for this time of the year is at 44 Bcf. Inventories rose by 17 Bcf for the week ending July 21, 2017.

Impact  

In March 2017, US natural gas inventories were 21.0% higher than their five-year average. For the week ending July 28, 2017, inventories are 2.9% higher than their five-year average. It suggests that US natural gas inventories are slowing. US natural gas inventories have fallen ~27% from their all-time high.

If the momentum continues, US natural gas inventories might fall below their five-year average by the end of December 2017. The fall in US natural gas inventories would have a positive impact on natural gas prices.

In the next part, we’ll discuss whether the US natural gas rig count adds more concerns for natural gas bulls.

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