|By Marketwired .||
|March 22, 2013 08:20 AM EDT||
NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 03/22/13 -- Things are slowly starting to turn around for the Natural Gas as warmer weather and falling supplies have sent futures to a 16-month high. Natural Gas for April delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange touched $3.965 a million British thermal Monday, the highest since October 2011. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Natural Gas Industry and provides equity research on EXCO Resources Inc. (NYSE: XCO) and Ultra Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: UPL).
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Forecasts for colder temperatures in major consuming regions across the U.S. have been a major cause for the recent surge in prices. Historically, around this time of year temperatures are on the rise and the demand for heating begins to fall. MDA Weather Services has forecasted mostly lower-than-normal temperatures for most of the U.S. throughout the rest of March. Since hitting a four-month low of 3.125 per million British thermal units in mid-February prices for the commodity have surged approximately 20 percent.
Prices for the commodity have also received a boost from a steep decline in inventories. Last week, the Energy Information Administration reported stockpiles declined 146 billion cubic feet, compared with a decline of 66 billion cubic feet in the same week a year ago.
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EXCO Resources is engaged in the exploration, exploitation, development and production of onshore oil and natural gas properties in East Texas, North Louisiana, Appalachia and the Permian. The company reported oil, natural gas and NGL production of 477 Mmcfe per day for the fourth quarter of 2012. Shares of EXCO Resources have gained over 20 percent in the past month.
Ultra Petroleum is focused on developing its long-life natural gas reserves in the Green River Basin of Wyoming -- the Pinedale and Jonah fields -- and is in the ongoing exploration and early development stage in the Appalachian Basin of Pennsylvania -- Marcellus Shale. The company reported record natural gas and crude oil production of 257.0 Bcfe for 2012. Shares of Ultra Petroleum have gained over 10 percent in 2013.
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