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Natural Gas Recovery Might Fade Away

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Natural gas

On April 22, natural gas prices settled at $2.52 per MMBtu (million British thermal units)—1.4% above the lowest closing level for active natural gas futures since June 8, 2016. In the trailing week, natural gas futures fell 2.5%. During this period, cooler weather forecasts and short covering might have helped natural gas prices to rise.

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Natural gas on April 23

At 7:25 AM EST on April 23, natural gas May futures were almost unchanged. The weather forecast on April 22 estimated the total degree days for the next two weeks at 147, compared to 135 last year, according to Refinitiv data. For a sustained recovery in natural gas prices, the weather must stay higher than the levels last year or natural gas prices could fall more.

On April 18, the natural gas supply in the lower 48 US states was 89.3 Bcf per day—0.9 Bcf per day less than the all-time high. The rise in oil prices might have raised natural gas production. Another fall in natural gas prices could be important for natural gas–weighted stocks like Range Resources (RRC), Cabot Oil & Gas (COG), Antero Resources (AR), and Chesapeake Energy (CHK).

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