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U.K. Natural Gas Drops as System Flows Exceed Predicted Demand

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Feb. 18 (Bloomberg) -- U.K. natural gas for today fell as system flows exceeded predicted demand by the most in a month, leaving the delivery network with a surplus.

Day-ahead and next-month gas also declined, according to broker data compiled by Bloomberg. The delivery network will contain 400 million cubic meters of gas at 6 a.m. tomorrow, up from 349 million 24 hours earlier, the biggest difference since Jan. 18, National Grid Plc data showed earlier. Closing linepack was predicted at 350 million cubic meters at 4:25 p.m. London time.

Gas for today dropped 1.3 percent to 66.5 pence a therm. Month-ahead gas slipped 0.3 percent to 66 pence a therm. That’s equivalent to $10.21 per million British thermal units and compares with $3.17 per million Btu of front-month U.S. gas.

Demand in the 24 hours to 6 a.m. tomorrow is forecast at 326 million cubic meters, compared with a seasonal normal of 309 million, National Grid data show. System flows were at 330 million cubic meters a day versus a 10-day average of 334 million, after reaching 347 million earlier today, grid data show.

Norwegian imports were at 124 million cubic meters a day, after reaching 131 million, the most since Jan. 15, Gassco AS data show.

Statoil ASA’s output will be reduced by 6.3 million cubic meters a day tomorrow for one day after cutting production by 6.6 million cubic meters a day today, the company said on its website.

South Morecambe gas field halted production at 3:59 p.m. for an indefinite period of time, Centrica Plc said on its website.

To contact the reporter on this story: Matthew Brown in London at mbrown42@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lars Paulsson at lpaulsson@bloomberg.net

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