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Natural Gas Markets Endure a Rocky Week: What Happened?

The U.S. Energy Department's weekly inventory release showed that natural gas supplies increased more than expected. The bearish inventory numbers, together with signs of production gains, affected natural gas futures, which settled with a heavy loss week over week. Meanwhile, forecasts for higher weather-related demand and a resurgence of LNG exports represent a few bright spots for the fuel. Considering that the space remains highly susceptible to unpredictable weather patterns that impact prices and market stability, at this time we advise investors to snap up Buy-rated stocks like Coterra Energy (NYSE: CTRA) and hold onto others like Cheniere Energy (NYSE: LNG). EIA Reports a Build Slightly Larger Than Market Expectations Stockpiles held in underground storage in the lower 48 states rose 32 billion cubic feet (Bcf) for the week ended Jun 28, above the analyst guidance of a 30 Bcf addition. The latest increase puts total natural gas stocks at 3,134 Bcf, 275 Bcf (9.6%) above the 2023 level and 496 Bcf (18.8%) higher than the five-year average. Natural Gas Prices Finish Significantly Lower Natural gas prices trended southward last week, following the higher-than-expected inventory build. Futures for August delivery ended Friday at $2.32 on the New York Mercantile Exchange, plunging some 10.8% from the previous week's closing. Despite this dip, the commodity has been resurgent over the past few months — gaining 47.5% in the second quarter — and wiped out almost all its deficit since the start of this ...