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Natural Gas Prices Fell due to Bearish Weather and Inventory Data

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Natural gas price

Natural gas prices mostly fell between May 4 and May 7. They closed at $2.734 per MMBtu (British thermal units in millions) on Thursday, May 7. This was 1.5% lower than last Friday’s close of $2.776.

Natural gas prices affect natural gas producers’ profitability like Enerplus (ERF), Cabot Oil and Gas (COG), Range Resources (RRC), and Antero Resources (AR). Cabot Oil and Gas and Range Resources are part of the iShares Global Energy ETF (IXC). They account for ~1% of IXC.

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Price movements this week

On Monday, May 1, prices increased by 1.6%—compared to last Friday’s price of $2.776. They settled at $2.821 on Monday—the highest in almost seven weeks.

Prices rose as the government’s Global Forecast System reaffirmed above normal temperatures in the US Midwest and Northeast. Above normal temperatures boost cooling demand. It’s bullish for natural gas prices.

However, on Tuesday, prices declined by 1.4% to close at $2.78.

Prices continued to retreat the next day, as MDA Weather Services forecasted that above-normal temperatures in the eastern US will ease next week. Prices fell by 0.1% to close at $2.776 on Wednesday.

Responding to a more-than-expected increase in natural gas inventories in the EIA’s (U.S. Energy Information Administration) report, prices slipped ~1.5% to settle at $2.734 on Thursday. You can read more about last week’s changes in inventories in Part 1.

Prices were trading close to $2.75 on Friday.

In the next part of this series, we’ll discuss last week’s natural gas production and consumption trends.

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