Natural gas and the S&P 500 Index
For the week ending July 22, 2016, September natural gas futures (UNG) (FCG) (GASX) (DGAZ) (BOIL) rose by 0.55%. The S&P 500 Index (SPY) (QQQ) (IVV) rose by 0.61% in the week. Among the SPDR ETFs, the Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK) gained the most. XLK rose 1.8% from July 15 to July 22. The rally was driven by rising investor confidence and earnings beats in the sector. XLK’s returns are adjusted for dividends.
Last week, between July 15 and July 22, natural gas (GASL) (GASX) (FCG) futures contracts rose by 0.55%. The meek gain in natural gas prices, despite the bullish inventory data, was due to production and demand concerns.
On July 21, the EIA (U.S. Energy Information Administration) announced a 34 Bcf (billion cubic feet) addition to natural gas (UNG) (GASL) inventory levels for the week ending July 15. Analysts expected an addition of 38 Bcf, according to a survey by the Wall Street Journal.
Weakness in natural gas prices could be a key catalyst for natural gas–weighted stocks such as Gulfport Energy (GPOR), Comstock Resources (CRK), Range Resources (RRC), Antero Resources (AR), Rex Energy (REXX), Contango Oil & Gas (MCF), and Ultra Petroleum (UPL). It also impacts natural gas tracking commodity ETFs such as the ProShares Ultra Bloomberg Natural Gas (BOIL), the Direxion Daily Natural Gas Related Bear 3X ETF (GASX), the First Trust ISE-Revere Natural Gas ETF (FCG), and the Direxion Daily Natural Gas Related Bull 3X ETF (GASL).