Ultra Petroleum Corp. led a rebound by U.S. natural-gas producers as the price of the heating and power-plant fuel rose for a third straight day in New York.
Ultra, based in Houston, rose 7.2 percent to $21.12 at the close in New York, reaching its highest price in a month and bringing this week’s increase to 11 percent. Before today, the stock had dropped 57 percent over the past year as the value of its primary product and reserves declined. Other gainers included Southwestern Energy Co., Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. and Range Resources Corp.
Gas for June delivery rose 3 percent to $2.465 per million British thermal units today in New York. The benchmark price is up 30 percent from its 10-year low of $1.902 on April 19.
Ultra’s reserves are 96 percent gas and the fuel accounts for about 97 percent of production, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Its fields are in the Rocky Mountains in the U.S. West and the Appalachians of the U.S. East.
Three gas producers were among the top ten best-performing members of the Standard & Poor’s 500 index today. Southwestern, with output that’s more than 99 percent gas, rose 4.1 percent to $30.81 and Cabot, also based in Houston, rose 5.5 percent to $35.98. Range, based in Fort Worth, Texas, rose 4.5 percent to $67.83.