Thursday, March 20, 2014

EIA Natural Gas Storage Report: 48 BCF Withdrawal

Today's EIA Natural Gas Storage Report surprised with a smaller withdrawal than expected.  48 BCF was withdrawn from storage last week, compared to an expectation of about 60 BCF.  This leaves 953 BCF in storage with as many as three more weeks of withdrawals forecast, bringing season-end inventories near 900 BCF, which would be about 900 BCF below last year and the five year average.

PDF Report

Withdrawals in the Producing region were the largest, relative to historical norms, as this is the region that normally begins injection season earliest.  Here are this year's withdrawals in the Producing Region, along with 5 year averages.

Salt dome storage recovered the most, posting a +8 BCF injection:

Whereas non-salt facilities (all in the producing region) continued their decline, well below historical ranges:

While gas fell on the inventory news this morning, the task of refilling storage by mid-November is a daunting one, and without help from weather it may be difficult to refill storage above 3.4 TCF, even with significant increases in domestic production.

Based on key assumptions of:

  • Declining power demand for NG
  • Increase exports to Mexico
  • Decreased imports from Canada
  • Production averaging about +2BCFD vs 2013

...the storage re-fill only reaches about 3.3 TCF.  Here are those projections for 2014 and actuals for 2013: