US: EIA Natural Gas Report

Wed Nov 22 11:00:00 CST 2017

Actual Previous
Weekly Change -46bcf -18bcf

Natural gas in storage fell 46 billion cubic feet in the November 17 week to 3,726 bcf. The second consecutive weekly decline after 32 weekly increases is also the second week of the heating season, when weekly drawdowns are the norm. The weekly decline dwarfed the small 2 bcf drop in the comparable week last year but was 1 bcf smaller than the 47 bcf average decrease for the corresponding 47th week of the year over the last 5 years. However, this average would have been much smaller were it not for an outsized 162 bcf decrease during the 47th week in 2014.

The week's drawdown put natural gas stocks 7.9 percent below last year at this time, when they were exceptionally high because of lower consumption due to a mild winter. Though inventories were 3.1 percent below the 5-year average for this time of year, they were still within the 5-year historical range.

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) provides weekly information on natural gas stocks in underground storage for the U.S. and five regions of the country. The level of inventories helps determine prices for natural gas products.

Natural gas product prices are determined by supply and demand - just like any other good and service. During periods of strong economic growth, one would expect demand to be robust. If inventories are low, this may lead to increases in natural gas prices. If inventories are high and rising in a period of strong demand, prices may not need to increase at all, or as much. During a period of sluggish economic activity, demand for natural gas may not be as strong. If inventories are rising, this may push down natural gas prices.