US natural gas storage inventories decreased to 3.940 tcf for the week ended 20 November, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said.
The US natural gas storage withdrawal season started one week later than normal with a below-average draw of 18 bcf for the week as the Henry Hub winter strip shows slight declines with demand somewhat muted for the week in progress.
The withdrawal was less than an S&P Global Platts survey of analysts calling for a 25 bcf pull. Responses to the survey ranged from a 4 bcf injection to a 39 bcf withdrawal.
The build was also less than the 47 bcf draw reported during the same week last year as well as the five-year average withdrawal of 37 bcf, according to EIA data.
US supply-and-demand balances were considerably tighter during the following week, with cooler weather inflating residential-commercial consumption by 9.8 bcf/d week-on-week, according to Platts Analytics.
Storage volumes now stand 322 bcf, or 9 percent above the year-ago level of 3.618 tcf, and 250 bcf, or 6.8 percent, above the five-year average of 3.690 tcf.
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