Natural Gas storage decline as winter progresses–Dec 17th

The EIA’s weekly report  about prices, consumption and storage of Natural gas in the US was published yesterday; there is also herein an update about the prices of major energy commodities and precious metals.

Storage of Natural gas for the passing week:

After last week’s small fall in Natural gas underground storage (Billion Cubic Feet) by 2.3%, this week there was a larger fall of 4.4%, which is a drop of over 164 Billion cubic feet, and reached 3,561 (Billion Cubic Feet) for all lower 48 states.. This big drop was expected as there is an increase in consumption of energy throughout the US mainly for heating purposes. These levels of storage are very high and similar to the storage level at the beginning of October 2010, before winter time.

According to the EIA report and its published data for the week until 15th of December, there was a rise in consumption due to the extremely cold weather: the consumption rose by 4.3% to an average of 96 Bcf/day; however, Natural gas prices didn’t rise, and if any, they fell sharply probably due to the high storage levels and good supplies (no impediments) as presented above; according to the report, the Henry Hub price, after rising for several weeks, it seems that the upward trend has shifted and during the week of the report (8-15 Dec) it fell by 0.24 USD/ MMBTU and reaching 4.22USD.

The Northeast, which suffered a colder front, had the significant price increase, while the West the price fell as the temperatures rose.

The temperatures in the lower 48 States were colder than normal during the week ending December 9. The average degrees the lower 48 States last week were 34, 5.3 degrees below normal, according to EIA.


Here is an update on the prices of main energy and precious metals commodities for December 17th:


Crude oil prices continue to zigzag with one day rising and the following day falling, with no apparent trend:

The crude oil price of short term futures (Nymex) – delivery for January 2011, as of 16.53 PM GMT, on the New York Mercantile Exchange, is currently traded at 88 USD per barrel, which represents a 0.3 USD/b increase or a 0.34% rise.

The Dated Brent spot crude oil is at 91.32 USD per barrel – a 0.1 USD per barrel decrease as of 17.03PM GMT.

The WTI spot price is trading as of 16.34PM GMT at 87.74 USD per barrel, a very moderate rise of 0.05% compare to the previous business day’s rate.

Natural Gas future price (the Nymex Henry Hub Future) is currently traded as of 16.53 PM GMT, at 4.06 $ MMBTU (one million BTU), a small increase of 0.01 which is 0.3%.

Precious Metals

Gold price continue to rise as it started at the beginning of the week, as the short term January delivery future (Gold 100 oz.) is currently traded at 1,371 USD /t. oz., a moderate 0.03% increase or 0.4 USD /t. oz. at 16.56 PM GMT.

Silver price, as of 16.56 PM GMT, is traded at 29.01 $/t oz. a 0.8% increase or 0.228 $/t oz, and thus Silver gets closer to the 30 USD mark.

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