The US Energy Information Administration today issued its weekly report for natural gas in storage and though the data showed a big decline in stores, it was in line with expectations and has provided no support to the commodity’s price today.
Gas in US storage decline 195 billion cubic feet last week. The consensus estimate of a survey conducted by Reuters was for a withdrawal of 196 bcf. The price of natural gas has been swept higher in recent months by the harshness of this year’s winter, with the price exceeding $6 per million British Thermal Units just last month.
Though today’s report shows total supplies at 1.001 trillion cubic feet, a ten-year low for this time of year, the fact that the decline was well anticipated has led to a sell-off. The severest part of the winter is now behind us and even if we see unseasonably low temperatures going forward they will have less impact than below-average temperatures in the prime heating months of January and February. In fact, above-average termperatures are forecast for the next few days in several major US cities.
Natural gas futures were down 2.74% at $4.356 per million British Thermal Units by mid-afternoon in New York.