Natural Gas Jumps Most in 11 Months as Frigid Blast Lifts Demand

(Bloomberg) By Naureen S. Malik – Natural gas futures jumped the most in 11 months as a blast of arctic weather predicted to swoop into the U.S. signaled stronger demand after a mild December. The futures rose for a second day as the government’s midday Global Forecast System showed temperatures will be well below normal from the Midwest to Northeast Jan. 22 through Jan. 26, said Frontier Weather Inc. A U.S. gas stockpile decline last week probably topped the five-year average for the first time in seven weeks as consumption of the heating fuel surged, analyst estimates showed. “The important thing is that it is still cold, it didn’t warm up, and then the forecast changed to colder weather,” said Tom Saal, senior vice president of energy trading at FCStone Latin America LLC in Miami. “These are the weeks in the middle of January and early February where we could see those larger withdrawals from storage.” Natural gas for February delivery rose 29 cents, or 9.9 percent, to settle at .233 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the biggest one-day gain since Feb. 19. Volume for all futures traded was more than double the 100-day … continue reading

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