MARKET WATCH
Natural gas futures price falls

By OGJ editors

HOUSTON, May 27 -- The expiring June natural gas contract fell again on May 26 as crude prices continued to edge higher.

Natural gas for June delivery dropped 19.2¢ to $6.12/MMbtu on the New York Mercantile Exchange, almost 10% below the price level where it began as the near-month contract. It marked the third consecutive NYMEX session with a significant divergence between natural gas and crude prices, said analysts at Enerfax Daily.

The July contract for benchmark US light, sweet crudes inched up by 3¢ to $51.01/bbl on NYMEX, while the August position advanced by 5¢ to $51.71/bbl. On the US spot market, West Texas Intermediate at Cushing, Okla., gained 22¢ to $51.02/bbl. The June heating oil contract increased by 1.99¢ to $1.45/gal on NYMEX. However, gasoline for the same month slipped by 0.39¢ to $1.448/gal just prior to the long Memorial Day holiday that marks the official start of the summer driving season in the US.

In London, the July contract for North Sea Brent crude gained 9¢ to $50.16/bbl on the International Petroleum Exchange.

In Vienna, the headquarters of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries was closed May 26-27 for a public holiday, so no reports on the group's basket price were available.

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