Natural Gas Gains on Outlook for Above-Average Stockpile Drop

Natural gas futures rose for the second time in three days before a government report that may show an above-average stockpile decline.

Gas gained as much as 1.2 percent before the Energy Information Administration report, which may show an inventory drop of 130 billion cubic feet last week, based on the median of 21 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Boston may get 4 to 6 inches (15 to 20 centimeters) of snow from a wet, windy storm that dropped about 9 inches in Chicago.

“All eyes are going to be on the inventory report,” said Bob Yawger, director of the futures division at Mizuho Securities USA Inc. in New York. “We had a pretty cool end to the winter season that helped produce these bigger-than-normal withdrawals. The storm that has been drifting across the country for several days has definitely sparked demand.”

Natural gas for April delivery increased 3.2 cents, or 1 percent, to $3.503 per million British thermal units at 9:16 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Trading volume was 33 percent below the 100-day average for the time of day. The futures have gained 4.5 percent this year.

The EIA is scheduled to release its weekly gas storage report 10:30 a.m. in Washington.

To contact the reporter on this story: Naureen S. Malik in New York at Nmalik28@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net

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