Natgas hovers near 10-year low

Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:28am EDT
 
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By Eileen Houlihan

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Natural gas futures were mired near a 10-year spot chart low under $2 per million British thermal units early Thursday, pressured by mild spring weather and record-high supplies.

U.S. government storage data due out later Thursday should show another build to send inventories further into record territory and tighten the bearish grip on the market.

Front-month May natural gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange were at $1.986 per mmBtu, up 0.2 cent, after sliding Wednesday to $1.972 to mark the lowest price for a front month since January 2002.

The front month lost 19 percent in March, its biggest monthly drop since August 2010, and dropped another 6 percent so far in April.

Most traders expected few gains in the near term, with no extreme cold or hot weather on the horizon to boost demand.

RECORD INVENTORIES

U.S. Energy Information Administration data last week showed total gas inventories rose to 2.479 trillion cubic feet, driving stocks further into record territory for this time of year.

(Storage graphic: link.reuters.com/mup44s)   Continued...

 
A worker checks the valve gears in a natural gas control centre of Turkey's Petroleum and Pipeline Corporation, 35 km (22 miles) west of Ankara, February 14, 2012. REUTERS/Umit Bektas