Natural Gas Prices Fall 80% To a 6.5 Year Low
Update: Top chart has been added, showing a -55% decline in futures prices for natural gas between early July and late October.
Bottom Line: Because of the significant decline in natural gas prices, we can expect lower electricity prices, and lower home heating costs this winter, and in fact it's already happening. From a USA Today story:
Here's a bright spot in an ailing economy: Electricity prices are falling in many areas.
The sharp drop in natural gas prices and, to a lesser extent, oil prices is slashing electric rates across big swaths of the USA. Utilities in the Northeast, Texas, Florida, the Mid-Atlantic and California rely heavily on natural-gas-fired power plants to generate electricity.
Natural gas prices have plummeted as the anemic economy has dampened consumption. Also, natural gas resources jumped this year as producers found ways to unearth fresh supplies embedded in shale rock.
Update 2: In an email, an energy economist writes "Starting in April of this year, utilities were filling their storage fields and reservoirs with high-priced gas in order to have plenty of supplies on hand for winter demand. Consumers will be charged the price the utilities paid for the gas when they put it in storage earlier this year. I fear you may be giving residential natural gas users false hope by implying they will be paying lower prices for their gas this winter. It's more likely that they'll pay more than they did last winter."