By March 31, 2016 Read More →

Natural gas stocks show withdrawal of 20 to 24 Bcf – Platts

Withdrawal of 22 Bcf would bring inventories to 2.471 Tcf, more than 1 Tcf above last year’s level


By Mitch DeRubis, quantitative modeling analyst with Platts Bentek

The U.S. EIA on Thursday is expected to report a natural gas storage withdrawal of between 20 and 24 billion cubic feet (Bcf) for the week that ended March 25, according to a survey of analysts by Platts.

A withdrawal within expectations would be more than the 10-Bcf drawdown reported at this time last year and in line with the 22-Bcf five-year average pull, according to EIA data.

The wider range of analysts’ expectations for this Thursday’s report called for a withdrawal of 15 Bcf to 31 Bcf.

The fluctuating stocks remain in a limbo between heating season withdrawals and storage build up as last week marked the first net injection of the year. And early forecasts see stocks growing again for the week ending April 1 followed by a weak drain for the week ending April 8.

Last week, the EIA reported a 15-Bcf injection that increased inventories to 2.493 trillion cubic feet (Tcf), which was 1.017 Tcf, or 68.9 per cent, more than the year-ago inventory of 1.476 Tcf, and 846 Bcf, or 51.4%, more than the five-year average of 1.647 Tcf.

A withdrawal within analysts’ expectations of 22 Bcf would bring inventories to 2.471 Tcf, or 846 Bcf, more than five-year average inventories and more than 1 Tcf above last year’s level in the corresponding week.

Almost all storage activity last week took place in two regions.

platts“The East and Midwest regions are forecast to have accounted for the entirety of the withdrawal for the week and 85 per cent of absolute net activity,” said Mitch DeRubis, a quantitative modeling analyst with Platts Bentek, an analytics and forecasting unit of Platts.

“East region sample activity totaled a net 14.6-Bcf withdrawal with a combined Dominion Transmission/Columbia Gas Transmission withdrawal of 11.3 Bcf compared to the previous week’s 2 Bcf and 2.7 Bcf withdrawals, respectively, when the EIA announced a 1-Bcf injection for the region.

“Meanwhile, Midwest net sample withdrawal activity totaled 8.5 Bcf, 5.3 Bcf above the previous week’s total, as temperatures in the Midwest Market region fell by an average 8.3 degrees.”

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