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Natural Gas Weekly: Total Exports Surge 30% As Flows To Liquefaction Resume

February 15, 2019  

This report covers the week ending February 15, 2019. Daily data for February 9 to February 14 is estimated. Daily data for February 15 is forecast.

Total Supply/Demand Balance

We estimate that aggregate demand for American natural gas (consumption + exports) will total around 859 bcf for the week ending February 15 (up 12.0% w-o-w and up 14.0% y-o-y). The deviation from the norm should remain positive and increase from +4% to +19% (see the chart below).

This week, the weather conditions have cooled down across the country - but particularly in the Central and Western part of the U.S. We estimate that the number of nation-wide heating degree-days (HDDs) surged by no less than 17.0% w-o-w in the week ending February 15. At the same time, non-degree-day factors are spurring some extra consumption - particularly in the Electric Power sector. The most important four non-degree-day factors that we are looking at are: the spread between natural gas and coalwind speedshydro inflows, and nuclear outages. Specifically, lower ng/coal spreads have already added some 1.5 bcf/d of potential coal-to-gas-switching (compared to February 2018), while the level of hydro inflows is some 600 MMcf/d weaker compared to previous year. According to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, nuclear outages averaged 4,940 MW this week, which is 14% below 5-year average. Overall, total energy demand (measured in total degree-days) should be above last year's level by no less than 12%.

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