Brent for April delivery is down slightly this morning.

01 February 2023

NBP prompt prices settled higher

Unplanned supply outages at Aasta Hansteen field and Kollsnes plant curbed Norwegian gas flows by up to 21MCM on Tuesday and provided support to the NBP prompt and near curve on the day.  The reports were posted early on Norwegian gas operator’s website and futures traded higher from the get-go.  The new front month of March traded up to 154.00p but once again the near curve floundered, and March settled just 6.11p higher on the day after prices slipped back in the afternoon.  Gassco reported that the supply issues on the Norwegian feeds should be resolved by the end of the week and this took the wind out of the sails for the recovery in prices.  NBP prompt prices settled higher on the day too with the spot and day ahead products recording gains of around 9.00p.

 Carbon prices rose by close to 4.0% yesterday

GB baseload futures were boosted by increases in gas, carbon, and spark spreads on Tuesday.  The February contract rose by £8.35/MWh on it’s last day trading and settled at £149.85/MWh.  Further out, the summer contract added £7.00/MWh to close at £150.00/MWh and gains from next winter out were very modest.  Carbon prices rose by close to 4.0% yesterday with the spot EUA closing at €90.10 per tonne.  Forecasts for strong wind generation countered upward pressure from the NBP prompt yesterday as the baseload day ahead contract settled flat. Wind generation was just shy of 20.0GW on the day and is forecast to remain high on Wednesday.

Crude oil prices settled higher on Tuesday

Crude oil prices settled higher on Tuesday save for the March contract for Brent which eased by 41 cents a barrel on its final day of trading.   The more actively traded April contract for Brent gained 96 cents to close at $85.46 a barrel while West Texas Intermediate settled at $78.87 gaining 97 cents a barrel.  There are hopes that the U.S. Fed will scale down it’s rate increases following the weeks labour costs report which showed wage growth slowed during quarter 4.  The dollar weakened in response to easing concerns of inflation, however, the Fed is likely to increase interest rates by 0.25% on Wednesday.  Early industry reports show U.S. crude and oil inventories increased last week but official figures will not be released until later in the day.

Gas prices for the NBP opened softer

The GB gas system is lagging today’s forecast demand of 265MCM by 17MCM.  The outage at Kollsnes plant is still unresolved and the potential impact of the turbine failure is 23MCM.  Gas prices for the NBP opened softer but near futures have switched tack with latest trades for March now in positive territory.  The front month last traded at 148.99p, up 3.48p which is a typical increase for the front months, the summer contract and beyond have yet to trade.  On the prompt, only the day ahead is active and is still showing a decline of 4.70p on yesterday’s close.  Brent for April delivery is down slightly at $85.35 a barrel.
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