Prompt-month natural gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange closed on Friday at $2.701 per MMBtu, down $0.032 from the previous week. Average pricing for the balance of 2018 and calendar year 2019 was at $2.825 and $2.791 per MMBtu, respectively.
The Energy Information Administration reported a net withdrawal of 29 Bcf for the week ending March 30, compared to a five-year average decline of 28 Bcf and a year-ago draw of 4 Bcf. At 1,354 Bcf, total storage inventories are currently 347 Bcf below the benchmark five-year average and 697 Bcf behind year-ago levels.
Domestic natural gas production increased to 79.6 Bcf per day for the seven-day period ending April 4, up 0.4 Bcf per day from the previous week and 8.4 Bcf per day ahead of the same period last year.
The residential & commercial sector led natural gas demand over the most recent week, averaging 25.3 Bcf per day compared to 20.2 Bcf per day during the same period last year. Total natural gas export volumes were down from the previous week, led by a decline of 0.4 Bcf per day in Mexican pipeline sendout.
Population-weighted heating degree days were 17.6% above average for the week ending April 6. The 6-10 day weather outlook forecasts below-normal temperatures across much of the country.