Prompt-month natural gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange closed on Friday at $2.944 per MMBtu, up $0.091 from the previous week. Average pricing for the balance of 2018 and calendar year 2019 was at $2.986 and $2.817 per MMBtu, respectively.
The Energy Information Administration reported a net injection of 46 Bcf for the week ending August 3, compared to a five-year average increase of 53 Bcf and a year-ago build of 29 Bcf. At 2,354 Bcf, total storage inventories are currently 572 Bcf below the benchmark five-year average and 671 Bcf behind year-ago levels.
Domestic natural gas production increased to 81.4 Bcf per day for the seven-day period ending August 8, up 0.3 Bcf per day from the previous week and 8.0 Bcf per day ahead of the same period last year.
The power generation sector led natural gas demand over the most recent week, averaging 37.5 Bcf per day compared to 33.8 Bcf per day during the same period last year. Total natural gas export volumes were unchanged from the previous week, with gains in Mexican output by losses in LNG sendout.
Population-weighted coding degree days were 15.5% above average for the week ending August 10. The latest 6-10 day outlook includes normal to below-normal temperatures across much of the country, with lingering heat on the coasts.