BWS Blog

What's Up With The EIA Misses?

Thursday, June 06, 2019 at 5:22PM

For the second consecutive week, the natural gas market was hit with an EIA report that showed a much higher build than almost all of the market estimates, with today's report showing an injection of 119 bcf compared to market consensus, and our own estimate, of 110 bcf, which again reflected supply / demand balances that were very loose.

natural gas commodity weather

This led to the July contract closing over 5 cents lower, making yet another multi-year low.

natural gas commodity weather

This begs the question, what is behind the recent misses? It doesn't seem to be the supply side, as we continue to see production failing to get back to its previous highs.

natural gas commodity weather

But is there more supply out there than is being indicated? We cannot be sure of this, although the extreme weakness in physical cash markets suggests it is a possibility.

Another explanation could relate to the weather. Last week we discussed the possibility that the 114 bcf build could have been high at least partially due to higher wind generation. That is not as much of a factor in this week's report, but let's dig a little deeper into the week's weather. Here are the daily GWDDs for the week ending 5/31:

natural gas commodity weather

Focus on the period highlighted in yellow. That was the Memorial Day weekend. Some of the week's highest demand happened to fall right on the holiday weekend. This could mean the overall impact of less actual demand due to the long holiday weekend was simply underestimated.

Either option is viable, or perhaps more likely, it is a combination of both. The truth will reveal itself soon enough, with a very important EIA report on tap for next week. We will continue monitoring all of the data in order to keep clients one step ahead of any changing market conditions. Sign up for a 10-day free trial here to check out all of the products we have to offer.