Natural gas spot prices averaged $4.04 per MMBtu at the Henry Hub in May 2013, down 13 cents from the $4.17-per-MMBtu average seen the previous month. EIA expects the Henry Hub price will increase from an average of $2.75 per MMBtu in 2012 to $3.92 per MMBtu in 2013 and $4.10 per MMBtu in 2014.

Natural gas futures prices for September 2013 delivery (for the five-day period ending June 6, 2013) averaged $3.97 per MMBtu. Current options and futures prices imply that market participants place the lower and upper bounds for the 95-percent confidence interval for September 2013 contracts at $3.03 per MMBtu and $5.21 per MMBtu, respectively. At this time a year ago, the natural gas futures contract for September 2012 averaged $2.48 per MMBtu and the corresponding lower and upper limits of the 95-percent confidence interval were $1.51 per MMBtu and $4.07 per MMBtu.