WASHINGTON — The Henry Hub spot price for natural gas averaged $3.56 per MMBtu in October, 34 cents lower than the September average, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook report released Nov. 8.
This month’s Outlook lowers the 2011 forecast by 6 cents to $4.09 per MMBtu and lowers the 2012 forecast by 19 cents to $4.13 per MMBtu compared with last month’s report.
Even while the delivered cost of natural gas continues to decline, EIA expects the cost of coal delivered to electric generators to increase by 6.4% during 2011. The net effect will be relatively modest growth in retail electricity prices over the forecast horizon, the report says.
For route drivers, EIA forecasts that the annual average regular-grade gasoline retail price, which averaged $2.78 per gallon in 2010, will increase to an average of $3.54 per gallon in 2011, before declining to an average $3.46 per gallon in 2012. The agency expects that on-highway diesel fuel retail prices, which averaged $2.99 per gallon in 2010, will average $3.84 per gallon in 2011 and $3.79 per gallon in 2012.