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Friday, February 1, 2013

Are Natural Gas Prices Headed Lower?

The natural gas futures contract has been trying to push higher since the immediate sell off after yesterday's EIA inventory release. However, as of this writing it looks like that effort is starting to wane.

Aside from the fact that yesterday's net withdrawal from inventory was bullish versus last year and the five year average for the same week it is not going to be repeated in next week's inventory based on the warm spell this week. In addition the inventory withdrawals for the next several weeks are likely to underperform versus history basis the latest NOAA six to ten day and eight to fourteen day forecast which both remain bearish.

The six to ten day forecast covering the period Feb 6 to the 10th is projecting above normal temperatures across the eastern two thirds of the country with the mid west expecting strongly warmer temperatures. The eight to fourteen day forecast is marginally less bearish in that the above normal temperatures are forecast for the eastern half of the country for the period February 8th through the 14th.

As it looks at the moment the first half of the February will likely experience less than normal levels of heating demand for the first half of February and thus not supportive of higher prices or at least not supportive of the market breaking out of the upside of the trading range (about $3.50/mmbtu) during that period.

Read Dominick Chirichella entire article and great chartwork.

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