Thursday, September 10, 2009

Storage Growth Moderate

The dreaded gas in storage figure was released by the Energy Information Administration today.  It showed that gas stocks increased by 69 Bcf to 3,392.  This number is 495 Bcf (+17.1%) greater than the figure this time last year and 503 Bcf (+17.4%) above the four year average.  The chart below shows the current storage amount (red line) compared against the five year range (shaded band).

The bad news is that the storage numbers are still well above average, but the good news is that the injection amount was not above the norm for this time of year.  In fact, the variance percentage has decreased slightly.  More good news is that the gas was injected in the right place.  By geography, storage levels are highest in the so-called Producing Regions (+32.4% variance above five year average) and are lowest in the consuming East Region (+9.6%).  Of the 69 Bcf injection this week, 80%, or 55 Bcf, went into storage in the East Region.

The market seems to like the news.  As of this writing, the near month NYMEX futures price for natural gas is up 15%.

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