Supplies 7% Above Average as Winter Approaches

Benchmark U.S. natural-gas prices fell over the past week even as demand increased, while gas in storage reached an all-time high as the industry readied for winter, the Energy Information Administration said.

Henry Hub gas as of November 7 was $3.47 per million British thermal units, down 3 cents from a week earlier, when prices hit the highest level since late November 2011. In NYMEX futures trading November 8, gas for December delivery rose 3 cents to $3.608, up from $3.554 at the end of last week.

Total U.S. gas demand rose 7% during the week ended November 7 compared to the previous week, led by a surge of 23% in residential and commercial consumption. Temperatures in the lower 48 U.S. states averaged 51 degrees Fahrenheit, about 1 degree below the 30-year average for the period.

Working gas in underground storage increased to 3.929 trillion cubic feet as of November 2, up 21 billion cubic feet from the previous week and the highest since the EIA began keeping records. Inventories are 6.8% higher than the five-year average for that date.

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