HOUSTON (ICIS)--US natural gas futures on the NYMEX closed slightly lower on 15 March, as forecasts show above-normal temperatures for the near term, which diminishes expectations for natural gas demand.
The April ’19 contract closed at $2.76/MMBtu on 15 March on the NYMEX, down $0.06/MMBtu from the previous day. Over the course of the trading week, the front-month contract closed on 15 March just $0.01/MMBtu lower than the start of the week, showing little volatility in the settlement price. The potential for a record-low inventory report gave some support to the Henry Hub benchmark price but this impact was limited.
The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimated on 14 March that stocks for the week ending 8 March fell by 204 billion cubic feet (bcf), or about 5.7 billion cubic metres (bcm).
While this storage figure was above expectations, signifying greater gas consumption for that period, sentiment on the forward curve was not much affected by the draw, given that the EIA has estimated that US gas production is expected to top near-record highs during the spring production season.