Natural gas futures slumped to settle at Rs 186.30 per mmBtu on December 24 as participants trimmed their position as seen by the open interest. Natural gas price had declined Rs 11.5 or 5.81 percent during the week on the MCX.
Natural gas demand for the residential sector rose to 36.5 billion cubic feet (Bcf) per day compared to 35.2 Bcf in the preceding week, while the industrial sector was slightly higher at 24.5 Bcf/d on a weekly basis, according to PointLogic Energy.
The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that the US natural gas inventories fell by 152 Bcf for the week ended December 18 against market expectations of 160 Bcf.
The number of rigs drilling natural gas in the US increased by 2 to 83 rigs for the week to December 23, said Baker Hughes in a weekly report. The rigs count rose for the third straight week in a row.
MCX iCOMDEX Natural Gas Index was down 48.08 points, or 2.04 percent to 2,311.38.
Sunand Subramaniam, Senior Research Associate, Choice Broking said, “Fundamentally for the weeks ahead, we are estimating MCX Natural Gas futures to trade mixed to bullish in expectancy of steady supplies, improved demand/usage and fall in inventories observed on a weekly basis.”
He also said that the US CPC expects improved weather conditions for the next 6-10 days which is expected to support prices in the week ahead. Overall, we expect mixed to bullish trend in MCX Natural Gas futures in the coming week, Subramanium noted.
In the futures market, natural gas for December delivery touched an intraday high of Rs 193.90 and an intraday low of Rs 185.80 per mmBtu on MCX. So far in the current series, natural gas has touched a low of Rs 175.90 and a high of Rs 259.80.
Natural gas delivery for December fell Rs 5.60, or 2.92 percent to settle at Rs 186.30 per mmBtu with a business turnover of 3,386 lots.
Natural gas delivery for January slipped Rs 4.70, or 2.46 percent, to close at Rs 186.70 per mmBtu with a business volume of 5,521 lots.
The value of December and January’s contracts traded on December 24 was Rs 4,247.68 crore and Rs 922.14 crore, respectively.
Natural gas price settled with a loss of 2.24 percent quoting at $2.53 per mmBtu in New York.
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