Energy Information Administration Logo. If you need assistance viewing this page, please call (202) 586-8800

Natural Gas Summary from the Short-Term Energy Outlook
EIA Home > Natural Gas > Natural Gas Weekly Update
Natural Gas Summary from the Short-Term Energy Outlook

   

 

 

Natural Gas Summary from the Short-Term Energy Outlook:

Now that the heating season has ended, natural gas wellhead prices have fallen from the exceptionally high levels seen in February and early March. Nevertheless, they still remain historically and unseasonably high, hovering around $5.00 per MMBtu. EIA projects that natural gas wellhead prices will remain above $5.00 per MMBtu in April and then decrease to $4.36 in May and $4.26 in June (Short-Term Energy Outlook, April 2003). Wellhead prices for the 2002-2003 heating season (November through March) averaged $4.44 per MMBtu, or $2.08 more than last winterís price. Overall in 2003, wellhead prices are projected to increase about $1.53 per MMBtu over the 2002 level to $4.40 per MMBtu. This projection is based on the expectation of lower volumes of natural gas in underground storage compared with last year and continued increases in demand over 2002 levels. Cold temperatures this past winter led to a record drawdown of storage stocks. By the end of March, estimated working gas stocks were 676 Bcf (prior estimates were 696 Bcf), which is the lowest end-of-March level in EIA records and 44 percent below the previous 5-year average. In 2004, continued tightness of domestic natural gas supply and high demand levels are expected to keep the average wellhead price near the 2003 level.

 

Despite high natural gas prices, natural gas demand is projected to increase by 2.7 percent in 2003, particularly if industrial sector consumption expands significantly as expected.Sharply higher weather-related demand is already a fact for the first quarter of 2003, as gas demand increased by 6.7 percent while the economy rose by 2.2 percent. In 2004, natural gas demand is projected to continue to rise as industrial demand continues its recovery from its 2002 lows.

 

Natural gas production, which fell by about 2.6 percent in 2002, is projected to increase by 1.5 percent in 2003. High natural gas prices and growing oil and gas field revenues are expected to lead to a resurgence in gas-directed drilling activity, which could push gas drilling totals in 2004 close to the high levels seen in 2001.Domestic production growth should accelerate in 2004 but, given recent experience, production increases might be less than 2 percent. With demand expected to outpace production growth, natural gas imports are expected to rise.

 


 

Short-Term Natural Gas Market Outlook, April 2003 

 

History

Projections

 

Jan-03

Feb-03

Mar-03

Apr-03

May-03

Jun-03

PRICES ($/MMBtu)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Average Wellhead Price

4.35

5.31

5.33

5.10

4.36

4.27

Residential Price

7.90

8.15

8.68

9.39

10.17

10.85

Electric Utilities Price

5.15

5.79

5.97

5.71

4.98

4.89

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SUPPLY (Trillion Cubic Feet)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total Dry Gas Production

1.64

1.48

1.66

1.59

1.61

1.55

Net Imports

0.29

0.29

0.30

0.31

0.31

0.30

††† Imports

0.35

0.33

0.35

0.35

0.35

0.35

††† Exports

0.06

0.04

0.04

0.04

0.04

0.05

Suppl. Gaseous Fuels

0.01

0.01

0.01

0.01

0.01

0.00

Total New Supply

1.944

1.776

1.965

1.908

1.923

1.853

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Working Gas in Storage

 

 

 

 

 

 

††† Opening

2.375

1.521

0.838

0.696

0.825

1.248

††† Closing

1.521

0.838

0.696

0.825

1.248

1.650

Net Storage Withdrawal

0.854

0.683

0.142

-0.129

-0.422

-0.403

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total Supply

2.798

2.459

2.107

1.779

1.501

1.451

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balancing Item

-0.184

-0.056

0.034

-0.187

-0.055

0.035

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total Primary Supply

2.614

2.403

2.141

1.592

1.446

1.485

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DEMAND (Trillion Cubic Feet)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lease & Plant Fuel

0.095

0.088

0.101

0.099

0.100

0.096

Pipeline Use

0.063

0.051

0.046

0.036

0.032

0.033

Delivered to Consumers

2.456

2.263

1.993

1.457

1.314

1.356

††† Residential

0.903

0.820

0.629

0.389

0.244

0.147

††† Commercial

0.459

0.427

0.358

0.254

0.180

0.141

††† Industrial

0.716

0.672

0.674

0.628

0.586

0.550

††† Electric Power

0.377

0.344

0.332

0.185

0.304

0.517

Total Demand

2.614

2.403

2.141

1.592

1.446

1.484

 

Note:Latest wellhead price from the Short-Term Energy Outlook is based on preliminary data.

Source:Energy Information Administration, Short-Term Energy Outlook, April 2003.

 

 

 

 

Need Help?
phone: 202-586-8800
email: infoctr@eia.doe.gov
Specialized Services from NEIC

For Technical Problems
phone: 202-586-8959
email:wmaster@eia.doe.gov

     Energy Information Administration, EI 30
1000 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20585

 

 

Home | Petroleum | Gasoline | Diesel | Propane | Natural Gas | Electricity | Coal | Nuclear

Renewables | Alternative Fuels | Prices | States | International | Country Analysis Briefs

Environment | Analyses | Forecasts | Processes | Sectors