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Natural gas futures drop from 5-week high on mild weather outlook

Published 05/04/2015, 08:41 AM
Updated 05/04/2015, 08:41 AM
© Reuters.  U.S. natural gas futures fall from 5-week high on mild weather - U.S. natural gas prices fell from the previous session's five-week high on Monday, as forecasts for mild weather across the U.S. in the week ahead dampened near-term demand expectations for the fuel.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, natural gas for delivery in June touched an intraday low of $2.739 per million British thermal units, before trading at $2.754 during U.S. morning hours, down 2.2 cents, or 0.81%.

On Friday, natural gas prices hit $2.800, the strongest level since March 25, before ending at $2.776, up 2.5 cents, or 0.91%. The June natural gas contract jumped 6.1 cents, or 8.1%, last week.

Futures were likely to find support at $2.557 per million British thermal units, the low from April 30, and resistance at $2.800, the high from May 1.

Weather forecasting models saw no significant changes over the weekend, calling for mostly mild weather across the U.S. during the first two weeks of May.

Spring usually sees the weakest demand for natural gas in the U.S, as the absence of extreme temperatures curbs demand for heating and air conditioning.

The heating season from November through March is the peak demand period for U.S. gas consumption. Approximately 49% of U.S. households use natural gas for heating, according to the Energy Department.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Energy Information Administration's next storage report slated for release on May 7 is expected to show a build of approximately 73 billion cubic feet for the week ending May 1.

Supplies rose by 68 billion cubic feet in the same week last year, while the five-year average change is an increase of 75 billion cubic feet.

The EIA said last week that natural gas storage in the U.S. rose by 81 billion cubic feet, below expectations for an increase of 85 billion and following a build of 90 billion cubic feet in the preceding week.

The five-year average gain for the period was a gain of 55 billion cubic feet, while supplies rose by 77 billion cubic feet during the comparable period a year earlier.

Total U.S. natural gas storage stood at 1.710 trillion cubic feet as of last week, 76.5% above year-ago levels and 4.2% below the five-year average for this time of year.

Last spring, supplies were 55% below the five-year average, indicating producers have made up for all of last winter’s unusually strong demand.

Elsewhere on the Nymex, crude oil for delivery in June tacked on 26 cents, or 0.43%, to trade at $59.41 a barrel, while heating oil for June delivery inched up 0.39% to trade at $1.990 per gallon.

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Latest comments

About what you reporting? They are above 2.800
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