Today's Fixed Prices & Market Intel
START MONTH – MAY ’23
PG&E CG SOCAL CG
1 MONTH $5.40 $5.57
3 MONTHS $5.80 $6.65
6 MONTHS $6.20 $7.26
12 MONTHS $6.78 $7.78
24 MONTHS $6.60 $7.48
Summer Strip (June ’23 – Oct ‘23)
Winter Strips (Nov ’23 – March ‘24)
May NYMEX natural gas on Friday closed down -0.016 (-0.71%).
May nat-gas prices Friday settled moderately lower.
Abundant U.S. nat-gas supplies are undercutting prices as total U.S. nat-gas stockpiles as of Apr 14 were 1.930Tcf, or +20.5%, above the 5-year average for this time of year.
Losses were limited by expectations for colder U.S. temps to boost heating demand for nat-gas. Colder-than-normal temps are seen across the eastern two-thirds of the U.S. from April 26-30.
Nat-gas prices have fallen sharply over the past three months and posted a 2-1/2 year low last Friday as abnormally mild weather across the northern hemisphere this past winter eroded heating demand for nat-gas.
January was the sixth-warmest across the contiguous 48 U.S. states in data from 1895. This winter's warm temperatures have caused rising nat-gas inventories in Europe and the United States. Gas storage across Europe was 57% full as of Apr 16, far above the 5-year seasonal average of 36% full for this time of year. Nat-gas inventories in the U.S. were +20.5% above their 5-year seasonal average as of Apr 14.
Lower-48 state dry gas production on Friday was 100Bcf (+3.1% y/y), moderately below the record high of 103.6Bcf posted on Oct 3, according to BNEF. Lower-48 state gas demand Friday was 65.1Bcf/day, down -0.4% y/y, according to BNEF. On Friday, LNG net flows to U.S. LNG export terminals were 14.4Bcf, unchanged w/w. On Sunday, LNG net flows to U.S. LNG export terminals rose to a record 14.9Bcf/day as nat-gas exports continue to increase from the Freeport LNG terminal as the terminal was partially reopened after being closed since last June because of an explosion.
A decline in U.S. electricity output is bearish for nat-gas demand from utility providers. The Edison Electric Institute reported Wednesday that total U.S. electricity output in the week ended Apr 15 fell -1.4% y/y to 68,576 GWh (gigawatt hours). Although, cumulative U.S. electricity output in the 52-week period ending Apr 15 rose +1.0% y/y to 4,108,950 GWh.
Thursday's weekly EIA report was bearish for nat-gas prices since it showed U.S. nat gas inventories rose +75Bcf, above expectations of +70Bcf. Nat-gas inventories are +20.5% above their 5-year seasonal average.
Baker Hughes reported Friday that the number of active U.S. nat-gas drilling rigs in the week ended Apr 21 rose by +2 to 159 rigs, just below the 3-1/4 year high of 166 rigs posted in the week ended Sep 9. Active rigs have more than doubled from the record low of 68 rigs posted in July 2020 (data since 1987).