Investing.com - Natural gas futures dropped on Monday after updated weather-forecasting models called for a return of milder temperatures across the eastern U.S. after a blast of cold air moves out.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, natural gas futures for delivery in April traded at $4.716 per million British thermal units during U.S. trading, down 5.91%. The commodity hit session high of $5.208 and a low of $4.702.
The April contract settled up 3.21% on Friday to end at $5.012 per million British thermal units.
Natural gas futures were likely to find support at $4.564 per million British thermal units, the low from Feb. 10, and resistance at $6.378, Thursday''s high.
A powerful blast of cold air will shoot across the northern U.S. states this week, through in the first and second week of March, warmer temperatures may return.
Temperatures could even climb higher than once expected from March 6-10.
Nymex natural gas prices rallied 15% last week, the second consecutive weekly gain, as frigid winter temperatures in the U.S. led households to burn a higher than normal amount of the fuel to heat their homes.
Total U.S. natural gas storage stood at 1.443 trillion cubic feet as of last week, the lowest for this time of year since 2004.
The heating season from November through March is the peak demand period for U.S. gas consumption. Approximately 52% of U.S. households use natural gas for heating, according to the Energy Department.
Data from the Commodities Futures Trading Commission released Friday showed that hedge funds and money managers increased their bullish bets in natural gas futures in the week ending February 18.
Net longs totaled 173,214 contracts, up 5.35% from net longs of 163,943 in the previous week.
Elsewhere on the NYMEX, light sweet crude oil futures for delivery in April were up 0.79% and trading at $103.01 a barrel, while heating oil for April delivery were up 0.43% and trading at $3.0519 per gallon.
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