Investing.com - Natural gas futures rose sharply on Thursday,
after data showed that U.S. natural gas supplies fell
more-than-expected last week.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, natural gas futures for
delivery in March rose to a session high of USD5.056 per million
British thermal units, the most since February 6.
Natural gas prices last traded at USD5.036 during U.S. morning
trade, up 4.45%. Futures traded at USD4.932 prior to the release of
the supply data.
The March contract settled 0.04% lower on Wednesday to end at
USD4.822 per million British thermal units.
Natural gas futures were likely to find support at USD4.780 per
million British thermal units, the low from February 12 and
resistance at USD5.396, the high from February 6.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly
report that natural gas storage in the U.S. in the week ended
February 7 fell by 237 billion cubic feet, compared to expectations
for a decline of 233 billion cubic feet.
The five-year average change for the week is a decline of 162
billion cubic feet.
Total U.S. natural gas storage stood at 1.686 trillion cubic
feet. Stocks were 863 billion cubic feet less than last year at
this time and 631 billion cubic feet below the five-year average of
2.317 trillion cubic feet for this time of year.
The report showed that in the East Region, stocks were 315
billion cubic feet below the five-year average, following net
withdrawals of 106 billion cubic feet.
Stocks in the Producing Region were 232 billion cubic feet below
the five-year average of 845 billion cubic feet after a net
withdrawal of 89 billion cubic feet.
Meanwhile, freezing temperatures and heavy snow was expected
across most parts of the U.S. Northeast and Southern part of the
Bullish speculators are betting that the winter storm will
increase demand for the heating fuel.
The heating season from November through March is the peak
demand period for U.S. gas consumption. Approximately 52% of U.S.
households use natural gas for heating, according to the Energy
Natural-gas inventories have fallen sharply since November as
frigid winter temperatures in the U.S. led households to burn a
higher than normal amount of the fuel in furnaces to heat their
Elsewhere on the NYMEX, light sweet crude oil futures for
delivery in March dipped 0.15% to trade at USD100.22 a barrel,
while heating oil for March delivery added 0.05% to trade at
USD3.013 per gallon.
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