EUROPE GAS-Prices mixed after sharp Thursday drop
The benchmark Dutch front-month contract rose slightly on Friday morning while British prompt prices eased amid a balanced supply and demand picture, after prices dropped heavily the previous day.
The front-month contract on the Dutch title transfer facility (TTF) traded on the Intercontinental Exchange rose 0.80 euros to 23.90 euros per megawatt hour (MWh) by 0923 GMT.
On Thursday, it hit a fresh two-year low of 22.94 euros/MWh on the exchange, as concerns over a disruption to Norwegian liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply waned.
Equinor EQNR.OL had to shut production at its Hammerfest LNG plant to fix a leak, with a restart planned for June 8. However, it can still load vessels from LNG in storage tanks, it said on Friday.
“We could see prices fall Friday as well, although the market initially opens with sideways trading,” analysts at Energi Danmark said in a morning note.
Following the short-lived “panic” about the Hammerfest LNG leak, the market remains otherwise confident, consultancy Auxilione said in a report.
“But it is clear the smallest bit of negative news can cause short-term panic. Let’s see what today brings us,” it added.
The Dutch day-ahead contract dropped by 0.60 euros to 23.30 euros/MWh.
Despite heavy maintenance at Norwegian gas production sites, storage levels in Europe are very healthy at an aggregate 69% full, and LNG was being imported continuously, Refinitiv analyst Tomasz Marcin Kowalski said.
“We expect storage injections to continue, which should put bearish pressure on the TTF day-ahead contract price,” he added.
In Britain, the within-day contract was 3.00 pence lower at 56.00 p/therm, and the weekend contract was down 0.50 pence at 56.50 p/therm.
Gas for power consumption in Britain for Monday was set to increase by 4 million cubic metres (mcm) per day, while local distribution zone (LDZ) consumption was down by 5 mcm/day, according to Refinitiv Eikon data.
In the European carbon market, the benchmark contract was up 1.69 euros at 80.41 euros a tonne.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Nora Buli in Oslo; Editing by Susan Fenton)