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OTC European gas liquidity down 3% on month, climbs 10% on year

London — European natural gas over-the-counter traded volume posted a mild loss on the month in June, but continued its trend of stronger results on an annual basis, data released Tuesday by the London Energy Brokers' Association showed.

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Total OTC gas trade stood at 3,047 TWh for June, the lowest for a calendar month so far this year and a 3% fall from May, but still stood 10% higher on an annual basis on the back of continuing increases on the key Dutch TTF hub.

Indeed, TTF liquidity came in at 2,096 TWh in June, down from the 2,151 TWh seen during the previous month but 30% higher on an annual basis.

TTF traded volume for the first half of 2019 indicated that the hub is set to see record high volume for a calendar year, with the H1 2019 period seeing a total of 14,052 TWh traded compared to the 10,578 TWh from the January-June, 2018, period.

However, on the UK's NBP hub, traded volume in June of 400 TWh was the second lowest for a calendar month since at least 2011 -- only the 325 TWh seen in December last year was lower than last month.

NBP liquidity fell by 11% on the month and by 41% on the year, with H1 2019 traded volume of 3,007 TWh about 26% lower when compared to the first six months of last year.

Elsewhere, liquidity was slightly higher on a monthly basis, with other European gas hubs combined coming in at 551 TWh in June against the 544 TWh in May and standing 16% higher on an annual basis.

Traded volume on the Austrian VTP hub remained close to record highs with 65 TWh traded last month. Liquidity on the Italian PSV hub posted increases of 19% on the month and 56% on the year to 131 TWh.

In total, European OTC liquidity for the first half of 2019 stood at 20,686 TWh, an increase of 18% on an annual basis, according to LEBA. The TTF hub accounted for 68% of the total traded volume after having accounted for 63% in 2018 and 54% in 2017.

The NBP hub accounted for a mere 15% of the total, down on the 21% from 2018 and further behind the 28% from 2017.

--Gary Hornby, gary.hornby@spglobal.com

--Edited by Kshitiz Goliya, kshitizgoliya@spglobal.com