US: EIA Natural Gas Report

Thu Dec 21 09:30:00 CST 2017

Actual Previous
Weekly Change -182bcf -69bcf

Natural gas in storage fell 182 billion cubic feet in the December 15 week to 3,444 bcf. The fifth weekly drawdown of the heating season was by far the largest, and though it fell short of the 209 bcf drawdown in the comparable week last year it was well above the 132 bcf average decline for the same week over the last five years. Natural gas stocks were 5.0 percent below their level last year at this time, when they were exceptionally high largely due to inventory build caused by low heating consumption in the preceding mild winter, and they were also 2.4 percent below the 5-year average for this time of year. Though stocks remain well within the 5-year historical range for the period, they have been moving closer to the bottom of that range in the last few weeks.

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.