By Anthony Harrup
The recent winter storms that swept across the United States have led to a surge in demand for natural gas and resulted in the shutdown of some production. As a result, analysts are predicting a significant withdrawal from natural-gas inventories.
According to a survey conducted by The Wall Street Journal, eight analysts, brokers, and traders expect a decrease of 323 billion cubic feet in underground storage for the week ending on January 19th. This withdrawal would be more than double the 154-Bcf reduction observed in the previous week and also surpass the five-year average of 148 Bcf.
The estimates provided in the survey range from a withdrawal of 310 Bcf to one of 333 Bcf.
The Energy Information Administration is scheduled to release its weekly storage report on Thursday at 10:30 a.m. EST.
While January’s severe weather conditions initially drove up natural-gas prices during the first two weeks of the year, a subsequent decline occurred as temperature forecasts warmed and the anticipated large draws on storage were factored into pricing.