The US Energy Information Administration today reported the US natural gas stocks rose by a total of 62 billion cubic feet, considerably above the 53-57 billion cubic feet increase that analysts had expected. Natural gas prices are more than -4.5% lower this morning, at $2.31/thousand cubic feet, about $0.11/thousand cubic feet lower than a week ago.
The EIA reported that US working stocks of natural gas totaled 2.88 trillion cubic feet, about 687 billion cubic feet higher than the five-year average of 2.2 trillion cubic feet. Working gas in storage totaled 2.16 trillion cubic feet for the same period a year ago.
US natural gas inventories are about 33% higher than they were a year ago and about 31% higher than the 5-year average. Both figures are lower than they were a week ago.
Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), the country’s largest producer of natural gas, is up about 0.5% at $80.54 in a 52-week range of $67.03-$87.94. Cheseapeake Energy Corp. (NYSE: CHK) is up about 0.4% at $18.29 in a 52-week range of $13.32-$35.75. EOG Resources Inc. (NYSE: EOG) is up about 0.6% at $95.47 in a 52-week range of $66.81-$119.97.
The US Natural Gas Fund (AMEX: UNG) is down about -4.3% at $16.11 in a 52-week range of $14.25-$50.56. The ETF reflects only natural gas futures for the near-month contract and is a reasonable substitute for the commodity price.