The U.S. Energy Information Administration raised its forecast for Henry Hub natural gas spot prices this year due to new export capabilities and rising domestic consumption.
In its latest Short-Term Energy Outlook released on May 9, the agency said Henry Hub gas prices would average $3.17 per million British thermal units in 2017 and $3.43/MMBtu in 2018.
The 2017 estimate is up 7 cents while the forecast for 2018 is down 2 cents as compared to forecasts in EIA’s March short-term outlook.
In April, the average Henry Hub natural gas spot price was $3.10/MMBtu, 22 cents above the March level.
U.S. dry natural gas production is forecast to average 74.1 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2017, a 1.8 Bcf/d increase from the 2016 level, EIA said.
This increase reverses a 2016 production decline, which was the first annual decline since 2005.
EIA expects natural gas production in 2018 to be 3.2 Bcf/d more than the 2017 level.