Thursday, August 15, 2013

Natural Gas: Looking for Another Leg Lower After the Heatwave

I've mentioned:
*When options on the futures were introduced in 1992 a buddy of mine eschewed all weather reports from the Midwest and Great Lakes figuring that the only temp that mattered was whether or not the traders felt cold at the exchange.

He retired rich, I don't know if there's a correlation....
It looks like the NYMEX (zip code10282)  is going to be warm next week:

but the futures could trade up to $3.60 (from last week's 3.129 spike bottom) and still be in a downtrend:

HT on both graphics: Hard Assets Investor.
Here's the EIA's natural gas weekly report for the week ending yesterday:

Natural Gas Weekly Update 
...Increased power-sector demand raised total consumption 1.8% compared to last week. Natural gas demand was up, driven by a 3.1% increase in electric-sector consumption. Temperatures in the Northeast and parts of the Midwest rose from unseasonably cool summer weather, raising electric-sector gas consumption by 15.9% and 20.9%, respectively, week-over-week. The Pacific Northwest experienced above-normal temperatures for the week, driving electric-sector consumption up 12.4% over last week. The Southeast went from slightly below-normal to slightly above-normal weather, prompting a 6.1% increase in electric-sector consumption. The Southeast is the largest natural-gas consuming region for electricity generation.

Texas and the Midcontinent regions both consumed 10.3% less gas for electricity generation than the week before. Every region except the Pacific Northwest is consuming less natural gas for this sector than a year ago. Nationally, the electric sector is consuming 13.6% less gas than a year ago.
Residential and commercial consumption rose by 1.6%, contributing to the overall demand increase. During the report week, temperatures averaged between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit in much of the northern half of the country, which prompted some amount of home heating at night. Industrial consumption of natural gas stayed flat for the report week, increasing by 0.1%. Exports to Mexico fell by 4.9%.

Supply decreased by 0.3% over last week because of lower production. Dry natural gas production, which is the largest contributor to U.S. natural gas supply, was down 0.9%. Net Canadian imports increased by 8.0%, partially offsetting the decrease in production. Canadian imports in the West increased by 9.1% to meet electric-sector demand in the Pacific Northwest, driving the overall increase in imports. LNG imports also increased, but are a minor contributor to supply....MUCH MORE