Mon 26 Mar 2012 08:45:00 CT
May natural gas prices grinded higher during the early morning hours, as they continued to consolidate last Thursday's downdraft. The latest data from Baker Hughes showed the number of rigs drilling for natural gas fell to the lowest level since May 2002. This marked the 11th straight weekly decline. Heat-related demand for natural gas remains under pressure from an extraordinarily warm winter, and that trend is expected to continue in the week ahead. The latest data from the National Weather Service projected heat-related demand for natural gas to run more than 39.0% below normal this week. The Commitments of Traders Futures and Options report as of March 20th showed non-commercial traders were net short 137,508 contracts, a decrease of 5,146. Non-commercial and non-reportable traders combined held a net short position of 110,076 contracts, for a decrease of 2,862.
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