Monthly Energy Market Summary

By May 30, 2017Energy Consultant

Gas: Prices declined over the month of April on steady LNG imports.

Power: Power prices are still largely influenced by gas prices in the energy market.

Oil: Rising US production keeps prices moving downwards.

Gas Review:

Gas prices settled lower by the end of April, even after bouncing back mid-month. This was mostly driven by a well-supplied gas system as LNG imports were steady and the weather was above seasonal norm. In the second half of the month, however, temperatures dipped below the norm alongside an announcement by Centrica that Rough Storage would not be available for the 2017/2018 injection period. An announcement was made by the Dutch government, who plan to cut output from one of their largest gasfields in October by 10%. Despite these announcements, the upwards recovery in prices was short-lived.

Power Review:

Business energy power prices took direction from the gas market throughout April. Prices reached a low during mid-month when supply from renewable generators was highest. Wind generation was above seasonal norms with solar prevalent at peak hours. In the second-half of the month, prices started to increase as temperatures dropped and more power for heating demand was required. The system came under mild upwards pressure on several occasions as a few nuclear reactors were under ongoing maintenance. By the end of the month, temperatures had started to rise, which pulled prices lower.

Oil Review:

Oil prices climbed at the beginning of the month due to a number of factors. There was an unplanned production issue in the North Sea and shut-downs at Libyan oilfields. Indications from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC countries show that they plan to extend their current oil cutbacks into the second half of the year. The current agreement is in place until June. An increase in prices was also seen after the US airstrike on Syria, which created political uncertainties in the Middle East. Towards the end of the month prices declined following a stronger US dollar. Throughout the month, US oil production weighed heavily on prices. By the end of the month US refiners had, in fact, raised their throughput to their highest since November 2015.

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