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U.S. natural gas inventories seen up 21 bcf in week to July 30: Reuters poll

U.S. utilities injected a smaller-than-normal 21 billion cubic feet (bcf) of natural gas into storage last week as hot weather caused power generators to burn more of the fuel to keep air conditioners humming, a Reuters poll showed on Wednesday.

That compares with a build of 32 bcf during the same week a year ago and a five-year (2016-2020) average injection of 30 bcf.

In the prior week ended July 23, utilities added 36 bcf of gas into storage.

If analysts are on target, the injection during the week ended July 30 would take stockpiles to 2.735 trillion cubic feet (tcf), 6.1% below the five-year average and 16.3% below the same week a year ago.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) will release its weekly storage report at 10:30 a.m. EDT (1430 GMT) on Thursday.

Temperatures were warmer-than-usual last week with 101 cooling degree days (CDDs). That compares to a 30-year average of 90 CDDs for the period.

CDDs, which are used to estimate demand to cool homes and businesses, measure the number of degrees a day’s average temperature is above 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius).

Reuters polled 17 analysts, whose estimates ranged from a build of 14 bcf to 34 bcf, with a median injection of 21 bcf.

Early estimates for the week ending Aug. 6, ranged from an addition of 17 bcf to 56 bcf, with a mean increase of 49 bcf.

That compares with an injection of 55 bcf during the same week last year and a five-year average build of 42 bcf.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Nakul Iyer in Bengaluru; editing by Scott DiSavino and David Gregorio)

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