Energy prices closed relatively flat this week, following two weeks of price increases. During this week's seven-day report period, the average 12-month price for natural gas on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) only rose 1% and the 12-month average price for peak power on the PJM was nearly identical to last week's closing price. During the previous two-week period of August 9-22, natural gas prices had risen 7.9% and electricity prices increased 4.2%.
For all practical purposes, summer is over. Even though the official start of autumn isn't until September 22, the impending arrival of the fall season seems to have calmed the marketplace and put the brakes on the recent price rally.
In the energy business, we commonly refer to autumn as the "shoulder season," a period of time where we experience minimal need for either heating or cooling. Perhaps the arrival of this shoulder season will place some downward pressure on energy prices that had, until very recently, been on the rise.
Stay tuned and have a happy Labor Day weekend!