* Extreme cold expected to linger for several more days
* Major gas line to New York City warns shippers
By Eileen Houlihan
NEW YORK, Jan 24 Extreme cold weather in the
U.S. Northeast pushed regional New York natural gas prices to
their highest level in nine years intraday on Thursday, but
prices ended the day at their loftiest mark in five years,
Reuters data showed.
Early in the day gas for Friday delivery on the Transco
pipeline at the New York City gate jumped more than
$3 to an average of $39 per million British thermal units, the
highest average price for New York gas since peaking at $47 in
But despite trades as high as $44, the final average price
on Transcontinental Gas Pipeline system (Transco) was $38, just
under the 2008 winter peak of $38.35.
Other New York prices traded in the $12.50 to $32.50 area,
while other Northeast prices in the $31 to $34 area, according
The William Companies Inc-owned Transco is a major
provider of natural gas to the U.S. Northeast and Southeast.
The company on Wednesday issued a system-wide operational
flow order to its shippers effective Thursday as the cold led to
Operational flow orders, or OFOs, protect the integrity of a
pipeline by requiring shippers to balance their daily supply
with customers' usage, typically within a specified tolerance
Transco said it would notify all shippers as soon as
operations on its system allow the termination of the OFO.
The 10,000-mile (16,100-km) Transco natural gas pipeline
system has the capacity to carry 9.6 billion cubic feet of
supply per day from South Texas to New York City.
The Weather Channel's weather.com said temperatures in New
York would reach a high of only 24 degrees Fahrenheit (-4
degrees Celsius) on Thursday, with lows dipping into the
low-teens, and with highs on Friday and Saturday also topping
out under 30 degrees F.