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EIA Inventory Data Pushed Natural Gas Slightly

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Natural gas inventories

Today, the EIA released its natural gas inventory data for the week ended February 22. It reported a decline of 166 Bcf (billion cubic feet) in natural gas inventories, just 5 Bcf less than Reuters poll for a decline of 171 Bcf. With this fall, the natural gas negative inventories spread expanded by 4.1 percentage points for the last week on a week-over-week basis. The expansion in the negative inventories spread is a positive development for natural gas prices.

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Natural gas prices

Today at 11:20 AM ET, natural gas rose just 0.4% from its last closing level. Recent weather forecasts indicate slightly more cold for the next two weeks than previously anticipated, which could help natural gas keep its upside journey—at least in the short term. In the trailing week, natural gas prices rose 4.9%.

Refinitiv analysts increased the total degree days to 467 on February 28 from 460 on February 27 in the lower 48 US states for the next two weeks. The total degree days are higher than the 30-year average of 332 for these weeks.

Any changes in natural gas prices could be important for natural gas–weighted stocks like Range Resources (RRC), Southwestern Energy (SWN), Gulfport Energy (GPOR), and Chesapeake Energy (CHK).

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