UPDATE 3-U.S. natgas futures end down despite cold, 1st loss in 3 days

Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:15pm EST
 
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* Late technical selling pressures futures prices

* Cold extended forecast should lift demand, limit downside

* Comfortable storage, record production weigh on sentiment

By Joe Silha

NEW YORK, Nov 18 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas futures reversed course and ended lower for the first time in three sessions on Monday, as early buying on cold weather forecasts gave way to a late wave of technical selling and profit taking at resistance.

"The weather forecasts looked more bullish today, but traders might be eying technical resistance above $3.70 (per mmBtu) and opting to get out of some of their long positions," said Aaron Calder, analyst at Gelber & Associates in Houston.

Calder noted the front contract briefly poked above $3.70 several times early in the session but could not hold above it.

After another day or two of mild weather, private forecaster MDA Weather Services expects mostly below-normal temperatures to dominate the eastern two-thirds of the nation in its six- to 15-day outlook.

Front-month gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange ended down 4.3 cents, or 1.2 percent, at $3.617 per million British thermal units, after climbing early to a 3-1/2-week high of $3.705.   Continued...