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UPDATE 1-U.S. natgas slips from 7-year high despite record global prices

 (Adds latest prices, production status)
    Sept 10 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas futures slipped on Friday from a seven-year high in the prior session
on forecasts for demand to ease in a couple weeks as the weather starts to turn seasonally cooler.
    Traders, however, noted current and future prices remained elevated because the weather was still expected
to stay hotter than normal through late September, U.S. and European gas storage was lower than usual going
into the winter heating season when demand for the fuel peaks, and gas prices around the world were at or near
record levels, keeping demand for U.S. exports high.
    In addition, U.S. production remains slow to recover after Hurricane Ida battered the Gulf Coast. U.S. gas
futures have surged more than 25% since late August when Ida entered the Gulf of Mexico.
    Front-month gas futures for October delivery fell 9.3 cents, or 1.8%, to settle at $4.938 per
million British thermal units (mmBtu). On Thursday, the contract closed at its highest since February 2014 for
a second day in a row.
    For the week, the front-month was up about 5%, putting it up for a third week in a row for the first time
since June.
    Strong gains in the October contract over the past few weeks have cut the November futures premium over
October NGV21-X21 to its lowest since April 2020.
    In addition, the premium of March 2022 futures over April 2022 NGH22-J22 rose to a record high this
week. The market uses the March-April and October-November spreads to bet on the winter heating season when
demand for gas peaks.
    The gas industry calls the March-April spread the "widow maker" because rapid price moves resulting from
changing weather forecasts have knocked some speculators out of business, including the Amaranth hedge fund,
which lost over $6 billion on gas futures in 2006.
    While futures for the next six months were trading down, most of 2022 and 2023 were trading higher with
Calendar 2022 rising over $4 per mmBtu for the first time.
    Data provider Refinitiv said gas output in the U.S. Lower 48 states fell to an average of 89.7 billion
cubic feet per day (bcfd) so far in September from 92.0 bcfd in August due mostly to Ida-related losses along
the Gulf Coast. That compares with a monthly record of 95.4 bcfd in November 2019.
    About 1.7 bcfd, or 76%, of gas production in the Gulf of Mexico remains shut-in since Ida, according to
government data. U.S. power company Entergy Corp said about 170,000 of its Louisiana
customers were still without service, down from a peak of 902,000 who lost power due to Ida.
    Refinitiv projected average U.S. gas demand, including exports, would rise from 87.3 bcfd this week to
87.7 bcfd next week before easing to 87.1 bcfd in two weeks when the weather starts to cool.
    The amount of gas flowing to U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plants has risen to an average of
10.8 bcfd so far in September from 10.5 bcfd in August as buyers around the world keep buying all the
super-chilled gas the United States can produce. That compares with a monthly record of 11.5 bcfd in April.
    Gas in Europe and Asia was trading around $20 and $19 per mmBtu, respectively,
compared with just $5 for the U.S. fuel. Gas prices at the Title Transfer Facility (TTF) in the Netherlands,
the European benchmark, were at a record high.
       
                                              Week ended     Week ended     Year ago   Five-year        
                                                Sep 10          Sep 3       Sep 10      average    
                                              (Forecast)      (Actual)                   Sep 10    
 U.S. weekly natgas storage change (bcf):         67             52            86          79           
 U.S. total natgas in storage (bcf):             2,990          2,923        3,601       3,237          
 U.S. total storage versus 5-year average        -7.6%          -7.4% Global Gas Benchmark Futures ($ per mmBtu)   Current Day     Prior Day    This Month  Prior Year   Five Year
                                                                           Last Year    Average      Average
                                                                                          2020     (2016-2020)
 Henry Hub                                       5.01           4.96          2.28        2.13        2.66
 Title Transfer Facility (TTF)                   19.91          19.24         3.94        3.24        5.19
 Japan Korea Marker (JKM)                        18.63          18.65         4.63        4.22        6.49 Refinitiv Heating (HDD), Cooling (CDD) and Total (TDD) Degree Days                                     
 Two-Week Total Forecast                      Current Day     Prior Day    Prior Year   10-Year      30-Year
                                                                                          Norm        Norm
 U.S. GFS HDDs                                    17             17            37          29          34
 U.S. GFS CDDs                                    149            142          103         135          116
 U.S. GFS TDDs                                    166            159          140         164          150 Refinitiv U.S. Weekly GFS Supply and Demand Forecasts                                                  
                                              Prior Week    Current Week   Next Week   This Week    Five-Year
                                                                                       Last Year   Average For Month
 U.S. Supply (bcfd)
 U.S. Lower 48 Dry Production                    89.5           89.9          90.3        90.2        82.6
 U.S. Imports from Canada                         7.0            7.0          7.2         6.5          7.6
 U.S. LNG Imports                                 0.0            0.0          0.0         0.1          0.1
 Total U.S. Supply                               96.5           97.0          97.4        96.8        90.3 U.S. Demand (bcfd)                                                                                     
 U.S. Exports to Canada                           2.4            2.6          2.7         2.1          2.3
 U.S. Exports to Mexico                           6.3            5.8          6.1         6.0          5.0
 U.S. LNG Exports                                10.5           11.0          11.0        5.5          3.1
 U.S. Commercial                                  4.5            4.6          4.7         4.8          4.8
 U.S. Residential                                 3.6            3.6          3.8         4.0          3.8
 U.S. Power Plant                                37.1           32.4          32.1        33.8        32.8
 U.S. Industrial                                 21.0           20.9          21.0        21.6        21.1
 U.S. Plant Fuel                                  4.4            4.4          4.5         4.4          4.4
 U.S. Pipe Distribution                           1.9            1.8          1.8         1.8          1.9
 U.S. Vehicle Fuel                                0.1            0.1          0.1         0.1          0.1
 Total U.S. Consumption                          72.8           67.9          68.0        70.5        68.9
 Total U.S. Demand                               92.0           87.3          87.7        84.1        79.3 SNL U.S. Natural Gas Next-Day Prices ($ per mmBtu)                                                     
 Hub                                          Current Day     Prior Day                                 
 Henry Hub NG-W-HH-SNL                         4.97           4.66                                    
 Transco Z6 New York NG-CG-NY-SNL              4.17           4.37                                    
 PG&E Citygate NG-CG-PGE-SNL                   6.57           6.64                                    
 Dominion South NG-PCN-APP-SNL                 4.07           4.17                                    
 Chicago Citygate NG-CG-CH-SNL                 4.76           4.78                                    
 Algonquin Citygate NG-CG-BS-SNL               4.20           4.50                                    
 SoCal Citygate NG-SCL-CGT-SNL                 10.96          19.75                                   
 Waha Hub NG-WAH-WTX-SNL                       4.63           4.73 SNL U.S. Power Next-Day Prices ($ per megawatt-hour)                                                   
 Hub                                          Current Day     Prior Day                                 
 New England EL-PK-NPMS-SNL                    43.25          47.50                                   
 PJM West EL-PK-PJMW-SNL                       42.00          44.50                                   
 Ercot North EL-PK-ERTN-SNL                    49.00          50.00                                   
 Mid C EL-PK-MIDC-SNL                          85.00         300.00                                   
 Palo Verde EL-PK-PLVD-SNL                    118.75         312.00                                   
 SP-15 EL-PK-SP15-SNL                          97.00         235.00                                   
 
 (Reporting by Scott DiSavino
Editing by Paul Simao)
  
 
 
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