MTECHTIPS;-Natural Gas Futures Extend Gains After Storage Data

MTECHTIPS;-Natural Gas Futures Extend Gains After Storage Data

MTECHTIPS-U.S. natural gas futures increased gains in North American trade on Thursday -initially breaking the $2.90 mark immediately following storage data, despite the fact that the figures showed that natural gas supplies in storage in the U.S. declined slightly less than expected last week. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that natural gas storage in the U.S. fell by 112 billion cubic feet in the week ended December 22, while analysts had forecast a decline of 113 billion. After the release, natural gas for delivery in February on the New York Mercantile Exchange gained 15.8 cents, or about 5.8%, to trade at $2.890 per million British thermal units by 10:34 AM ET (14:34 GMT). The commodity hit an intraday high of $2.907 immediately following the release. Futures had been surging by 14.6 cents, or about 5.3%, at $2.878 prior to the release of the supply data. That compared with a draw of 112 billion cubic feet (bcf) in the preceding week and represented a decline of 62 billion from a year earlier and was 85 bcf below the five-year average. Total U.S. natural gas storage stood at 3.332 trillion cubic feet,1.8% than levels at this time a year ago and 2.5% below the five-year average for this time of year

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