Analysts Forecast 91-Bcf Drop in U.S. Natural Gas Stockpiles
Published: Apr 03, 2013
Analysts and traders expect government data scheduled for release Thursday will show a large drop in gas inventories at a time when they usually rise and pull stocks below their five-year level for the first time since September 2011.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration is expected to report that 91 billion cubic feet of gas were withdrawn from storage during the week ended March 29, according to the average prediction of 15 analysts and traders in a Dow Jones Newswires survey.
The EIA is scheduled to release its storage data Thursday at 10:30 a.m. EDT.
The survey's median result was for a draw of 90 billion cubic feet, with a low estimate of a 80-bcf draw and a high of a 100-bcf draw.
Last year, storage rose by 43 bcf in the same week, while the five-year average is a rise of 4 bcf.
If the storage estimate is correct, inventories as of March 29 will total 1.690 trillion cubic feet, 2% below the five-year average and 31.5% below last year's record-high level for the same week. As recently as mid-February, stocks were nearly 18% above the year-earlier level.