MTECHTIPS;-Natural Gas Futures Snap Back as Weather Turns Milder

MTECHTIPS;-Natural Gas Futures Snap Back as Weather Turns Milder

MTECHTIPS-Natural gas futures extended their decline into a second session on Tuesday, as updated weather forecasts showed a return to mild weather after a cold spell in the eastern U.S. U.S. natural gas futures sank 5.5 cents, or around 1.8%, to $2.930 per million British thermal units by 8:15 AM ET (1315 GMT), after plunging 7.6 cents, or 2.5%, a day earlier. Monday’s plunge came as weather models predicted mild weather across most parts of the continental United States starting from Dec. 15. Initial forecasts called for much colder weather during the period. Natural gas futures have closely tracked weather forecasts in recent weeks, as traders try to gauge the impact of shifting outlooks on early-winter heating demand. Prices of the fuel typically rise ahead of the winter as colder weather sparks heating demand. The heating season from November through March is the peak demand period for U.S. gas consumption. Meanwhile, market participants looked ahead to this week’s storage data due on Thursday, which is expected to show a draw in a range between 3 and 12 billion cubic feet (bcf) in the week ended Dec. 1. That compares with a drop of 33 bcf in the preceding week, a fall of 42 bcf a year earlier and a five-year average decline of 69 bcf. Total natural gas in storage currently stands at 3.693 trillion cubic feet (tcf), according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. That figure is 309 bcf, or around 7.7%, lower than levels at this time a year ago and 107 bcf, or roughly 2.8%, below the five-year average for this time of year

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