Spot prices fluctuated over the report week (Wednesday to Wednesday), with Henry Hub starting the week at $3.82 per million British thermal units (MMBtu) on October 15, dropping 21 cents by Tuesday to $3.61, before settling at $3.68/MMBtu yesterday. Notably, northeastern pricing points remained relatively low; Algonquin Citygate, serving Boston, closed the report week at $2.74/MMBtu, and Transcontinental's Pipeline Zone 6 New York ended the report week at $2.68/MMBtu.
The New York Mercantile Exchange (Nymex) near-month (November 2014) contract fell again this week from $3.802/MMBtu last Wednesday to $3.659/MMBtu yesterday. The 12-month strip followed the same trend, dropping from $3.806/MMBtu on October 15 to $3.693 on October 22.
Working natural gas in storage rose to 3,393 Bcf as of Friday, October 17, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) Weekly Natural Gas Storage Report (WNGSR). A net increase in storage of 94 Bcf for the week resulted in storage levels 9.0% below year-ago levels and 9.1% below the five-year average for this week.
The total rotary rig count as of October 17 was 1,918 units, a decrease of 12 from the previous week, according to data from Baker Hughes Inc. The oil rig count decreased by 19 units to 1,590. The natural gas rig count increased by 8 to 328 active units from the previous week.
The Mont Belvieu natural gas plant liquids composite price declined again this week, dropping 7.8%, or 72 cents, to $8.42/MMBtu for the week covering October 13 –17. All components of the price fell, with natural gasoline, ethane, propane, butane, and isobutane falling 7.3%, 3.7%, 9.7%, 7.7%, and 7.6%, respectively. Plant liquid prices continue to follow the decline in oil prices as they have over the past few weeks.
Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration