Shifting flows lift Opal to Rockies premium

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Market sources noted those were extreme cold-weather days in the Rockies and along the West Coast. Flows on Ruby started hitting 1.4 Bcf/d around that same time, Bentek Energy data shows, the largest volumes transported on the pipe to date.

Sources noted with Ruby providing Opal with the greatest amount of flexibility, other regional markets are essentially left to duke it out over localized demand or compete with Midcontinent gas, which has been averaging at some of the lowest price levels this winter.

"Cheyenne has gotten weaker due to tighter spreads to the Midcontinent," another trader said. "And with Midcontinent and Rockies gas [prices] pretty tight to each other, there is not much room to pay a premium for the gas in order to transport it."

CIG is in a similar situation, with options moving west on Overthrust narrowing, said Bentek analyst Katie Jolly. Bentek is a unit of Platts.

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