Cool Frist 5-Days of May, Although Very Light Demand Expected May 7-13
May 1, 2023: Mixed trends in the weekend weather data, with the GFS gaining 9 TDDs on a mix of hotter and cooler trends but with the EC losing 2 TDDs. The GFS was forecasting 10-15 Bcf in less demand compared to the EC at Friday’s close, so now they’re better aligned. No changes to the timing of swings in national demand, with strong demand the next 7-days as a series of cooler than normal weather systems sweep across the US, coldest over the Midwest and Northeast w/lows of 30s and 40s. National demand would be stronger this week if not for cooler than normal temperatures also advancing into the South and Southeast for light cooling demand due to perfect highs of 70s to lower 80s. It will be very warm to locally hot Southwest deserts into Texas for regionally stronger cooling demand. Although, what could matter most, the weekend weather data maintained national demand dropping to light to very light levels May 7-15 as the northern US warms into the perfect 60s to 80s, while the southern US is warm to very warm with highs of 70s to lower 90s besides hotter upper 90s Southwest deserts.
Most important, the May 7-15 pattern maintained the start of a period where there’s potential for 3-4 weekly builds near or over 100 Bcf without notably hotter or colder trends. Of course, there’s still a couple smaller than normal builds to get through first, including this week’s EIA report, where expectations are for a build of +45-60 Bcf bullish versus the 5-yerar average build of +78 Bcf. If close, this will decrease surpluses from +365 Bcf to near +340 Bcf.