U.S. natural gas will average $3.85 per million British thermal units in the third quarter and $4.25 in the fourth quarter, below earlier forecasts as supply increases, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said.
“Debottlenecking” at the Marcellus shale sites in West Virginia and Pennsylvania are among the drivers of supply gains, Goldman Sachs analysts led by Damien Courvalin in New York said in an e-mailed report today. Goldman previously forecast U.S. natural gas prices would be $4.50 in the third and fourth quarters.
Production gains may be “temporary” because the number of gas rigs operating is low, Goldman said. Natural gas prices need to increase to $4.25 per million Btu by 2014 to bring rigs back into active production and keep the market balanced, Courvalin said.