- As the U.S. freezes and stocks plunge, benchmark U.S. natural gas futures topped $5/mmBtu for the first time since Aug. 2010 on expectations that continued cold weather would keep demand high for the heating fuel.
- Natl gas has moved well into overbought territory during the last few days as consumers have pumped up their thermostats, and the spike may last a while longer given that the cold snap is set to continue all of next week.
- Despite the run-up in prices for Jan. and Feb., longer-dated prices for the spring and summer remain below $4.50/mmBtu, providing little incentive for the likes of Chesapeake (CHK -0.1%), Devon (DVN -0.8%) and EOG (EOG -2%) to switch from oil to gas drilling.
- The shift to backwardation is a big boost to United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG +8.2%) and even bigger to the leveraged VelocityShares 3X Long Natural Gas ETN (UGAZ +24.4%).
- Other ETFs: GAZ, BOIL, DGAZ, UNL, KOLD, NAGS, DCNG.