The wholesale electric market did not see much movement from last week’s report. NYISO slightly decreased while NEISO and PJM remained steady. ERCOT saw a drop-off, as additional capacity projects are planned to come in service between 2018 and 2022.
Spot market pricing on the day-ahead shot up in PJM, while NEISO is returning to normal post-storm.
Natural Gas Markets
The natural gas market 2018 forward curve is trending down across the board. With strong production matching higher demand, the market is content to hover in its current range possibly until summer weather forecasts begin to appear. Changing weather forecasts have been driving volatility in the near term gas markets, while the long-term strips remain stable. With 3 or 4 weeks of withdrawal season remaining, end-of-season estimates are beginning to narrow, providing ample room for injections this summer in preparation for next winter.
Six-Month Natural Gas Futures
Futures as of 3/21/18 versus previous week:
Apr. $2.638 -0.093
May. $2.667 -0.092
Jun. $2.724 -0.085
Jul. $2784 -0.075
Aug. $ 2.802 -0.072
Sep. $2.787 -0.071
Natural Gas Inventory
According to EIA estimates, working gas in storage was 1,446 Bcf as of Friday, March 16, 2018, which represents a net decrease of 86 Bcf from the previous week. The market was expecting an 88 Bcf withdrawal from storage. There was a 137 Bcf withdrawal last year, with the 5 year average of 53.
NG Rig Count
The Baker Hughes exploration gas rig count increased by 1 rig to a total of 190 rigs. The report total is 35 rigs more than in operation last year when there were 155 rigs.
Temperatures remain below normal but are expected to warm up marginally heading into next week before dropping, once again, into below-normal territory as we move into April
National Weather Service Updates (NOAA)
Hurricane Watch- No Activity: Click here to view the National Hurricane Center site.
Equatorial Pacific Outlook: Click here to view La Nina and El Nino status.
Energy News & Resources
According to EIA’s Electric Power Monthly, total U.S. net electricity generation fell slightly (down 1.5%) in 2017, reflecting lower electricity demand.
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