Ample supplies and weak demand are pushing natural gas spot prices lower. On March 6, the Henry Hub spot price was $3.93, which was the lowest level since September 29, 2006. Also, the Henry Hub spot price has averaged below $4 on four consecutive days. Averaging below $4 on consecutive days hasn't been done since November 15, 2002. On March 11, the Henry Hub natural gas spot price was $3.92 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), which was 31 cents, or 7.3 percent, lower than the price of $4.23 last Wednesday. This Wednesday's price of $3.92 was 60 percent lower than the price of $9.69 per mmBtu on the second Wednesday in March 2008.
The amount of natural gas in storage in the East Region decreased 11.4 percent to 703 billion cubic feet for the week ending March 6, which was 55 billion cubic feet below the five-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. A forecast of Henry Hub prices to the year 2030 is available in Table 104 on line 635. To obtain the price per hundred cubic feet (ccf) or the approximate price per therm, or the approximate the price by ten (10).
A general rule of thumb: Add three dollars to the Henry Hub spot price to estimate the residential natural gas price. Likewise, add 30 cents if you have already converted the price from British thermal units to ccf or therms.
|Note: NA = Not available.|
Sources: Natural Gas Weekly Update. Energy Information Administration, Washington, DC. Nebraska Energy Office, Lincoln, NE.
This report was updated
on March 12, 2009.
Typically, there is one week between updates.