Milder temperatures, declining crude oil prices, and returning Gulf production after Hurricane Katrina caused prices to plummet this week although not as low as prices were pre-Katrina. The Minerals Management Service reported that shut-in natural gas production in the Gulf is at 40 percent of the daily gas production. For the week (Wednesday to Wednesday), the spot price at the Henry Hub fell $1.65, or about 13 percent, to $11.05 per million British thermal units (mmBtu). The Henry Hub price was $6.63 above last year's level of $4.42.
The amount of natural gas in storage in the East Region increased 2.7% for the week ending September 2 to 1,543 billion cubic feet which was 28 billion cubic feet above the 5-year average. Nebraska is a part of the East Region (see map) which is a major natural gas consumer, particularly in the residential and commercial sectors. The industrial sector, which includes agriculture, is also a major consumer in this state. Most of the gas is supplied from the Producing Region with a fair amount imported from Canada. The Henry Hub in southern Louisiana is a major market center with interconnections for many of the pipelines that transport U.S.-produced gas to the East Region. Furthermore, the Henry Hub is the preferred reference point for prices for most of the domestic gas destined for the East. Therefore, market conditions and developments in the East Region and price movements and trends at the Henry Hub are usually highly correlated.
Notes: An archive is
available. Divide the price by ten (10) to obtain the price per hundred cubic feet
(ccf) or the approximate price per
Natural Gas Spot Prices at the Henry Hub 2004 and 2005