UPDATE 2-US natgas prices up 1% on drop in daily output, higher demand forecasts – Yahoo Finance

(Adds latest prices) Sept 14 (Reuters) – U.S. natural gas futures climbed about 1% on Thursday on a on a drop in daily output, a big rise in crude futures, forecasts for higher gas demand over the next two weeks than previously expected and signs that Freeport LNG's liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant in Texas started to pull in more feedgas. Capping that price increase was a federal report showing last week's storage build was bigger than expected. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said utilities added 57 billion cubic feet (bcf) of gas into storage during the week ended Sept. 8. That was more than the 48-bcf build analysts forecast in a Reuters poll and compares with an increase of 74 bcf in the same week last year and a five-year (2018-2022) average increase of 76 bcf. Last week's injection included a 6-bcf build in the South Central region, which includes Texas, where a long-lasting, brutal heat wave caused energy firms to pull gas during the past seven weeks, the longest streak of withdrawals for the region during the summer since 2017. Even though last week's build was bigger than expected, analysts said it was still smaller than usual for this time of year because power generators were still burning lots of gas to keep air conditioners humming during the lingering heat wave. Front-month gas futures for October delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 2.8 cents, or 1.0%, to settle at $2.708 per million British thermal units. Before EIA released the storage report, gas futures were up by as much as 5.3%. Oil prices climbed about 2% on Thursday to their highest levels since November 2022 on forecasts for tighter supplies for the rest of 2023. SUPPLY AND DEMAND Financial firm LSEG said average gas output in the lower 48 U.S. states has eased to 102.2 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) so far in September, down from a record 102.3 bcfd in August. Most of that decline occurred this week. On a daily basis, output was on track to drop about 2.8 bcfd over the past four days to a preliminary two-month low of 99.9 bcfd on Thursday. Energy traders noted preliminary data is often revised later in the day. Meteorologists forecast the weather in the lower 48 states would remain near normal until Sept. 18 before turning mostly warmer than usual in the Sept. 22-29 period. Traders, however, noted that above normal temperatures in late September were not that hot, with averages of around 72 degrees Fahrenheit (22.2 Celsius) versus a normal of 70 F for that time of year. With seasonally cooler weather coming, LSEG forecast U.S. gas demand, including exports, will slide from 100.5 bcfd this week to 96.2 bcfd next week. Those forecasts were higher than LSEG's outlook on Wednesday. Gas flows to the seven big U.S. LNG export plants have averaged 12.6 bcfd so far in September, up from 12.3 bcfd in August. That compares with a monthly record of 14.0 bcfd in April. On a daily basis, however, LNG feedgas was only on track to reach 12.4 bcfd on Thursday due mostly to a reduction at Freeport LNG this week. The 2.1-bcfd Freeport facility was on track to pull in about 0.9 bcfd of gas on Thursday, up from an average of 0.3 bcfd over the past four days, according to LSEG data. Sources told Reuters that Freeport had canceled four cargoes since reducing feedgas this week. Last week, the plant was pulling in about 1.8 bcfd of pipeline gas. Looking ahead, traders noted Berkshire Hathaway Energy's 0.8-bcfd Cove Point LNG export plant in Maryland was on track to shut for about a week of planned maintenance around Sept. 21-29, according to company notices to customers. Cove Point shuts every year in the autumn for maintenance. In 2022, it shut from around Oct. 1-27, according to LSEG data. Week ended Week ended Year ago Five-year Sep 8 Sep 1 Sep 8 average Actual Actual Sep 8 U.S. weekly natgas storage change (bcf): 57 33 74 76 U.S. total natgas in storage (bcf): 3,205 3,148 2,760 3,002 U.S. total storage versus 5-year average 6.8% 7.6% Global Gas Benchmark Futures ($ per mmBtu) Current Day Prior Day This Month Prior Year Five Year Last Year Average Average 2022 (2017-2021) Henry Hub 2.81 2.68 7.76 6.54 2.89 Title Transfer Facility (TTF) 11.27 11.78 57.90 40.50 7.49 Japan Korea Marker (JKM) 13.39 13.39 46.99 34.11 8.95 LSEG Heating (HDD), Cooling (CDD) and Total (TDD) Degree Days Two-Week Total Forecast Current Day Prior Day Prior Year 10-Year 30-Year Norm Norm U.S. GFS HDDs 16 15 19 28 42 U.S. GFS CDDs 119 121 130 127 105 U.S. GFS TDDs 135 136 149 156 147 LSEG U.S. Weekly GFS Supply and Demand Forecasts Prior Week Current Next Week This Week Five-Year Week Last Year Average For Month U.S. Supply (bcfd) U.S. Lower 48 Dry Production 102.5 101.9 102.0 99.6 92.6 U.S. Imports from Canada 7.5 7.2 7.5 8.5 7.8 U.S. LNG Imports 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 Total U.S. Supply 110.0 109.0 109.5 108.1 100.4 U.S. Demand (bcfd) U.S. Exports to Canada 2.0 1.9 1.9 2.3 2.4 U.S. Exports to Mexico 7.0 7.0 7.0 5.5 5.6 U.S. LNG Exports 13.2 12.1 12.5 11.4 6.5 U.S. Commercial 4.5 4.7 4.7 4.7 4.9 U.S. Residential 3.6 3.8 3.8 3.7 3.9 U.S. Power Plant 42.5 42.2 37.6 36.2 34.9 U.S. Industrial 21.5 21.5 21.4 21.3 21.5 U.S. Plant Fuel 5.1 5.0 5.0 5.1 5.0 U.S. Pipe Distribution 2.1 2.1 2.0 2.1 2.2 U.S. Vehicle Fuel 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 Total U.S. Consumption 79.4 79.4 74.8 73.2 72.5 Total U.S. Demand 101.5 100.5 96.3 92.4 87.0 U.S. Northwest River Forecast Center (NWRFC) at The Dalles Dam Current Day Prior Day 2022 2021 2020 % of Normal % of Normal % of Normal % of Normal % of Normal Forecast Forecast Actual Actual Actual Apr-Sep 83 83 107 81 103 Jan-Jul 77 77 102 79 98 Oct-Sep 76 76 103 81 95 U.S. weekly power generation percent by fuel – EIA Week ended Week ended Week ended Week ended Week ended Sep 15 Sep 8 Sep 1 Aug 25 Aug 18 Wind 6 9 6 7 7 Solar 4 4 4 4 4 Hydro 5 5 6 5 6 Other 2 2 2 2 2 Petroleum 0 0 0 0 0 Natural Gas 47 44 45 45 45 Coal 18 19 19 20 19 Nuclear 18 17 18 17 17 SNL U.S. Natural Gas Next-Day Prices ($ per mmBtu) Hub Current Day Prior Day Henry Hub 2.76 2.72 Transco Z6 New York 1.65 1.73 PG&E Citygate 4.35 4.43 Eastern Gas (old Dominion South) 1.54 1.71 Chicago Citygate 2.34 2.35 Algonquin Citygate 1.74 2.33 SoCal Citygate 4.84 4.94 Waha Hub 2.22 2.19 AECO 1.96 1.97 SNL U.S. Power Next-Day Prices ($ per megawatt-hour) Hub Current Day New England 35.50 32.00 PJM West 32.25 27.00 Ercot North 30.25 33.25 Mid C 82.40 74.00 Palo Verde 44.50 36.25 SP-15 41.50 35.00 (Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Paul Simao and Timothy Gardner)
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