U.S. energy markets have already begun pricing Hurricane Harvey’s effects. With refineries and pipelines out of service, gasoline futures have spiked. So far natural gas futures have hardly responded to Harvey, and it may be another week before they do. One thing is certain: The U.S. gas-production sector has changed drastically in the 12 years since Hurricane Katrina.
But, factors other than a hurricane can also affect the U.S. gas market — lower-than-usual gas storage inventories or heat waves causing a spike in demand for power. A sustained impact on Gulf of Mexico offshore production would also influence prices, even though the Gulf is far less significant than it once was.
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