February natural gas prices traded lower during the early morning hours and slipped below the $3.00 in the process. The 6 to 10 day weather maps show a very large area of normal to below normal temperatures throughout the eastern half of the country, but that potential boost in heat-related demand for natural gas has offered little support to nearby prices. The Commitments of Traders Futures and Options report as of January 3rd showed non-commercial traders were net short 161,140 contracts, a decrease of 2,103. Non-commercial and nonreportable traders combined held a net short position of 136,863 contracts, a decrease of 2,048 in their net short position.