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AM Power Report: Dailies to open week varied with load, softer gas

Aftermoving mostly higher inthe Sept. 30 session, price activityfor power dailies could be choppy with a downside bias in the week's opening sessionMonday, Oct. 3, as the anticipation of diverging demand as the new workweek unfoldscombines with ongoing weakness at the natural gas futures arena.

At lastglance, November natural gas futures were trading 1.8 cents lower at $2.888/MMBtu,extending the 5.3-cent loss posted on Sept. 30, as traders look to milder fall weatherthat will help to boost weekly storage injections despite an unprecedented streakof below-normal builds posted throughout the refill season. While spot gas valueswill likely rebound as demand returns for the workweek, any gains should be containedby generally mild weather.

Lookingat demand, load forecasts for Tuesday are mostly aimed lower for areas along theEast Coast expected to be impacted by rain early this week, but with demand pointedhigher elsewhere in the country amid returning business-related demand support asthe fresh workweek unfolds.

In theNortheast, load in New England is called to reach 15,270 MW on Monday and 14,960MW on Tuesday, while New York demand is expected to peak at 18,940 MW on Mondayand 18,445 MW on Tuesday. In the Mid-Atlantic, demand in the PJM Western regionis poised to hit highs at 48,252 MW at the onset of the fresh business week and50,134 MW on Tuesday, while load in PJM Mid-Atlantic is projected to top out at32,638 MW on Monday and 31,960 MW on Tuesday.

In theMidwest, PJM AEP region demand is seen reaching highs at 14,851 MW on Monday and15,469 MW on Tuesday, while load in PJM ComEd is expected to see highs at 11,672MW at the return of the workweek and 12,321 MW on Tuesday.

In theSouth, ERCOT load is poised to touch a high near 51,029 MW on Monday and 52,036MW on Tuesday.

In theWest, demand in CAISO could crest at 29,734 MW on Monday and 30,312 MW on Tuesday.

In forwardaction, power for November delivery predominantly shed value ahead of the weekendand its debut as the front-month offering at return of the workweek, as a downdraftat the natural gas futures arena implied cheaper fueling costs. Soon-to-be balance-of-monthOctober power also had a weak showing in much of the country in its final day inthe lead slot.

In theEast, NEPOOL-Mass November defied the wider decline with a near 60-cent increaseto an index at almost $36, as PJM West November deflated by roughly 60 cents toaverage at about $34. October power gave back 25 cents in trades done at around$30 in New England and unraveled 70 cents in deals carried out at close to $33 atPJM West.

In theMidwest, losses of about 30 cents at PJM AD and PJM Northern Illinois took Novemberpower activity to indexes on either side of $32, as a near 80-cent reduction steeredMISO Indiana November to an average atop $34. Meanwhile, October values at the PJMhubs in the region were off roughly 20 cents to as much as 30 cents at indexes alsoaround $32, while MISO Indiana October was down 50 cents at an average approachingequal value with November hub action.

In theSouth, power prices for November slumped by a little more than 10 cents to averageatop $29 at ERCOT Houston and fell by about 70 cents to indexes on either side of$27 at the rest of the ERCOT markets. Price activity for October power was up byroughly 10 cents against the wider decline at above $32 at ERCOT Houston but downby between 40 cents and 50 cents at indexes spread from about $28 to $30 elsewherein the region.

In theWest, trades for November power tumbled by about 80 cents to an index near $36 atNorth Path-15 and fell by 60 cents to average close to $34 at South Path-15, assimilar deals faltered by 45 cents to atop $26 at Mid-Columbia and advanced by roughly10 cents against the broad downtrend to almost $27 at Palo Verde. Power transactionsfor October shed approximately 40 cents to average above $36 at North Path-15 andat close to $35 at South Path-15, as Mid-Columbia October held flat at near $24and Palo Verde October deflated by about 30 cents to average at around $27.

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Market prices and included industry data are current asof the time of publication and are subject to change. For more detailed market data,including power andnatural gas indexprices, as well as forwards and futures, visitour Commodities Pages.