Central European gas hub in Baumgarten. Archive photo
Futures prices for gas in Europe at auction on Thursday for the first time since March rose above 3300 dollars per thousand cubic meters, and the trading volume fell by about $ 3,200, according to the London exchange ICE.
Auction nearest futures (index largest European hub TTF) opened at a level slightly above 3080 dollars per thousand cubic metres (+3%). Price index amounted to 3067,9 dollar (+2,3%), high — 3331,5 dollars per thousand cubic metres (+11,4%), and the closing price of the dollar 3194,5 (+6,8%). Dynamics of reproduced from the settlement prices of the previous day — 2990,6 of the dollar, which was a record for all time of operation of gas hubs in Europe since 1996.
In early March quotes of gas in Europe because of fears of a ban on imports of Russian energy four days in a row was updated historical highs. The record price in 3892 dollar was achieved on March 7.
Now price volatility on the European gas markets associated with the uncertainty of its supplies. On Friday, Gazprom said that the gas pipeline “Nord stream” due to routine maintenance the only working gas compressor unit compressor station Portovaya stop for three days, from 31 August to 2 September. Futures contracts for the supply of gas in September (TTF) after the news jumped on Friday evening, almost 8% higher than the $ 2,700 per thousand cubic meters.
But significant growth in the cost of gas in Europe began in the spring of last year when the average price of the spot index TTF hub was varied in the range of 250-300 dollars per thousand cubic meters. In late summer, the value of the contract delivery “for the day ahead” has exceeded $ 600, and in early October of $ 1,000.
Experts attributed the price increase to several factors: the high demand for liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Asia, limited supply from key suppliers, and the low level of occupancy of the European underground storage after a long cold winter and hot summer.