- Natural gas prices rose on Monday as markets bet Thursday''s weekly U.S. supply report will reveal a relatively soft build, which could have supply implications for the coming winter.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, natural gas futures for delivery in June traded at $4.513 per million British thermal units during U.S. trading, up 2.25%. The commodity hit session high of $4.523 and a low of $4.392.

The June contract settled down 1.25% on Friday to end at $4.413 per million British thermal units.

Natural gas futures were likely to find support at $4.222 per million British thermal units, the low from April 2, and resistance at $4.549 the high from May 12.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration said that natural gas storage in the U.S. last week rose by 97 billion cubic feet last week, below forecasts for an increase of 99 billion cubic feet.

Total U.S. natural gas storage stood at 1.160 trillion cubic feet as of last week, 40% below their level this time last year and 45% below the five-year average.

U.S. stockpiles need to fill by November at the start of the heating season, which means quantities going into to storage must rise, as the possibilities of a winter storage still remain.

Stockpiles are 40% below their level this time last year and 45% below the five-year average.

Producers would need to add 2.6 trillion to 2.9 trillion cubic feet to storage by November 1 to meet typical winter demand, analysts said.

Early injection estimates for this week’s storage data due Thursday range from 88 billion cubic feet to 116 billion cubic feet. The five-year average change for the week is a build of 90 billion cubic feet.

Meanwhile, updated weather forecasting models called for mild springtime temperatures over much of the eastern and central U.S., which was likely to lower heating demand.

Spring and fall see the weakest demand for natural gas in the U.S, as the absence of extreme temperatures curbs demand for heating and air conditioning.

Approximately 52% of U.S. households use natural gas for heating, according to the Energy Department.

Elsewhere on the NYMEX, light sweet crude oil futures for delivery in July were up 0.77% at $102.36 a barrel, while heating oil for June delivery were down 0.03% at $2.9529 per gallon.

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