Bellatrix Exploration Ltd Update BUY Target Price $ 14

BXE : TSX : C$7.55
BXE : NYSE
BUY 
Target: C$14.00

COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Bellatrix Exploration is an intermediate sized exploration
and production company with operations in Western
Canada primarily focused on multi-zone opportunities in
west central Alberta.
All amounts in C$ unless otherwise noted.

Third Party  CONSTRAINTS
Energy — Oil and Gas, Exploration and Production

Investment recommendation
Bellatrix provided a brief operational update in which it highlighted two
unexpected plant turnarounds anticipated to impact corporate
production in late September. Although disappointing from a near-term
perspective; the continued effect from third-party facility impacts clearly
supports the company’s decision to construct its deep cut plant at Alder
Flats in 2015. We have revised our near-term production estimates
modestly to reflect the expected downtime in September and have taken
a slightly more cautious view in 2015. Given the reduced forecast, we
have modestly trimmed our target to C$14.00 and maintain a BUY
rating. Our fundamental view on the stock remains unchanged and with
a forecast 85% return to target, we see significant upside potential in the
stock. Our target price is based on 0.9x NAV and a 6.0x 2015E EV/DACF
multiple.
Investment highlights
Q3/14 volumes slightly lower. BXE has guided towards a Q3/14 average
of ~40.5 mboe/d, versus previous expectations in the 41.5 mboe/d
range. Our revised forecasts capture this update and maintain an
outlook where BXE reaches 48,000 boe/d by year end, which is
contingent on tie-ins to third-party facilities expected in Nov/Dec.
Stock significantly oversold at current levels. Since May 7, the stock has
underperformed the Energy Index by ~36%, largely as a result of
temporary operational challenges. At current strip pricing and even
assuming a downside case where production volumes average 5% below
our forecasts, implied valuation remains extremely compelling at 4.4x.
Valuation
Bellatrix trades at a 0.5x multiple to NAV, 3.6x EV/DACF, and $35,100
per BOEPD based on our 2015 estimates; a substantial discount to its peer group at 0.8x NAV, 7.1x EV/DACF, and $68,400/BOEPD.

Continental Resources BUY

CLR : NYSE : US$72.88
BUY 
Target: US$92.00

COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Continental Resources is a U.S. exploration and
production company with operations in the Williston
Basin (ND & MT) and the SCOOP play (OK). CLR is
headquartered in Oklahoma City, OK.
Energy — Oil and Gas, Exploration and Production
A LARGE SERVING OF THE WB WITH A “SCOOP” ON TOP; INITIATE WITH BUY
Investment recommendation
CLR is the largest leaseholder in the Williston Basin (WB) with 1.2 million
net acres and is also an industry leader in downspace and enhanced
completions testing in the play. Successful downspacing can add
meaningful value for shareholders, as could increased EURs from
improved completion techniques. Additional upside could come from the
development of the SCOOP in Oklahoma, where the company is the
largest leaseholder and producer in the play. CLR’s upcoming analyst day
could provide meaningful catalysts on all fronts. We initiate coverage with
a BUY rating and $92 price target.
Investment highlights
 Continued success in WB downspacing can add further upside to
NAV. CLR will conduct three more 660 foot (160-acres) density tests
this year, the results of which could serve as major catalysts when
released, likely by year’s end. Its first such test in McKenzie County
posted strong IP rates in the Bakken and the Three Forks (TF)
benches. These next three pads will target other areas of the WB.
 We feel enhanced completions techniques, including the use of
slickwater fracs and increased proppant volumes, should have a
positive impact on EURs going forward. CLR’s latest wells employing
these techniques have solidly outperformed offset wells. It plans more
enhanced completions at its next high-density pads.
 We believe the SCOOP will continue to grow at very robust rates
(~50% Y/Y in 2015E) and thereby bolster CLR’s oil/condensate
volumes in the coming years. The testing of extended and stacked
laterals are positive steps, in our view, towards adding further upside
to its already solid position in that play.
 The company is on very solid ground with regard to liquidity, in our
view. Combined with internal cash flow generation, CLR should have
more than ample capital to fund WB and SCOOP development.
Valuation
Our $92 price target is based on a 10% discount to a ~$103 NAV

Whiting Petroleum

WLL : NYSE : US$83.53
BUY 
Target: US$108.00
COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Whiting Petroleum engages in the acquisition,
development, exploitation, exploration, and production of
oil and gas properties. The company primarily focuses in
the Permian Basin, Rocky Mountains, Mid-Continent, Gulf
Coast, and Michigan regions of the United States.

Energy — Oil and Gas, Exploration and Production
POISED TO UNLOCK EVEN MORE OF THE WB & NIOBRARA; INITIATE BUY
Investment recommendation
We believe WLL has substantial upside given its ~845K net acres (pro
forma) in the core of the Williston Basin (WB), which can be further
exploited via downspacing and enhanced completion techniques. The
pending acquisition of KOG bolsters its inventory in the core of the WB.
Strong production growth in the Niobrara excites us as well. WLL trades
at a discount to its peers that we consider unwarranted. In our view,
continued solid execution will result in a narrowing of the valuation gap.
Thus, we initiate coverage with a BUY rating and $108 target.
Investment highlights
 WLL is testing enhanced completion techniques in its latest
Bakken/Three Forks (TF) wells; if successful, we believe they can
add meaningful upside to EURs and rates of return. Additional tests
of slickwater fracs and coiled tubing completions are planned for
this year. Cemented liner/plug & perf completions have already
yielded a 23% improvement in EURs at little incremental cost.
 The pending acquisition of KOG would enhance WLL’s inventory in
some of the best areas of the WB. The combined entity would have
>3,400 net future drilling locations. WLL plans to up the rig count to
26 by the end of 2015. It also intends to lower KOG’s average well
costs to $8.5M from $9.2M, which we consider very achievable. The
deal should be accretive on all relevant metrics starting next year.
 We foresee rapid production growth in the Niobrara (~2.5x y/y
growth in 2015E). At its Redtail acreage, it is testing tighter spacing
in the B bench and also wells in the C bench; results from its 32-
well Horsetail Pad should come in January. Success there could
double its Redtail inventory to ~3,300 net locations from ~1,650.
 The company should have ample liquidity to fund continued drilling
efforts in the WB and Niobrara. Even with the assumption of KOG’s
~$2.3B of debt, the balance sheet remains in solid shape.
Valuation
Our $108 price target represents a 10% discount to a ~$120 NAV

China Data Signals Slowing Economy – Commodities Update – Oil, Iron Ore, Gold, Nickel, Copper

Copper lead most industrial metals lower after factory and retail-sales data signaled further slowing in China, the world’s biggest user.

Copper in London fell as much as 1 percent, while aluminum, nickel, lead and tin also declined. Industrial-output growth in China was the weakest in August since the global financial crisis, while investment and retail sales moderated, figures released Sept. 13 showed. Factory data due today from the U.S., the second-biggest metals user, will probably indicate activity in August slowed from the previous month, according to a Bloomberg News survey.

“The Chinese data over the weekend came in worse than expected,” Daniel Hynes, an analyst at Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd., said by phone from Sydney. “It’s not surprising the base metals are weaker on the back of it.”

Copper for delivery in three months on the LME fell to as low as $6,770.75 a metric ton, the lowest intraday level since Sept. 11. Prices were down 0.5 percent at $6,804 a ton by 3:16 p.m. Hong Kong time, poised for the lowest close since June 19.

In New York, the December-delivery contract dropped 1 percent to $3.077 a pound, while in Shanghai the metal for delivery in November fell 0.4 percent to close at 48,380 yuan ($7,877) a ton.

Industrial output in China rose 6.9 percent from a year earlier in August, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Sept. 13. That’s down from 9 percent in July and the slowest pace outside the Lunar New Year holiday period of January and February since December 2008, based on previously reported figures compiled by Bloomberg.

On the LME, lead fell 0.6 percent to $2,110 a ton, while aluminum declined 0.4 percent to $2,020.50 a ton.

Vale’s View

Iron ore may rise to as much as $100 a ton by the end of the year because of declining inventory at ports, Vale Chief Executive Officer Murilo Ferreira told reporters on Sept. 12 in Beijing. Some producers are reducing exports given current prices, Ferreira said. China is the world’s largest buyer.

In China, there’s mounting evidence locally-mined supplies are starting to drop, Morgan Stanley’s Crane wrote. Output, when adjusted to show the equivalent of 62 percent content, fell 13 percent between April and July year-on-year, he said.

“Market participants appear split on the floor price,” Australia & New Banking Group Ltd. analysts including Mark Pervan wrote in a report today. While some are “thinking the resilience of Chinese iron ore supply will see prices fall below $80 a ton, while others firmly believe domestic output can’t sustain current price levels for much longer.”

Expanding Glut

Iron ore prices are unlikely to recover as the global surplus expands, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said in a Sept. 10 report. The bank reduced its price forecast for the final three months of 2014 by 10 percent to $90, and also reduced full-year estimates for 2016 and 2017.

The structural nature of the surplus and a weak demand outlook in China make a recovery in prices unlikely, Goldman analysts Christian Lelong and Amber Cai wrote in the report. The global glut will more than triple to 163 million tons in 2015 from 52 million tons this year, and widen further to 245 million tons in 2016 and 295 million tons in 2017, it said

Oil Supply

Brent fell to $96.27 a barrel after settling at its lowest level since June 2012 amid concern global fuel consumption is slowing while output climbs. West Texas Intermediate crude sank 1 percent to $91.34 today, after slipping 0.6 percent Sept. 12. The International Energy Agency cut its global oil-demand forecast for 2015 last week.

Russia’s ruble slid as much as 0.5 percent to 37.0380 per dollar, a record low, before trading at 37.985. The euro bought 49.2745 rubles, the most since Sept. 1. The Micex Index climbed 0.2 percent in Moscow.

Copper for three-month delivery on the London Metal Exchange fell to $6,802.75 a metric ton, following last week’s 2 percent retreat. Lead dropped 0.6 percent to $2,108 a ton.

Gold for immediate delivery increased 0.4 percent to $1,234.98 an ounce after closing last week at $1,229.65, the lowest since Jan. 9.

Palladium climbed 1.3 percent to $848.50 an ounce.


2014-08-13 Reuters Gold Poll

Reuters quarterly interviews analysts to gather their gold price prediction. We have collected the forecasts made in 2014 and conclude that the sentiment has stabilized but the expectations for 2015 remain low.

THOMSON REUTERS 2014 Avg Gold Price Prediction 2015 Avg Gold Price Prediction No of Analysts interviewed
Q1 Poll Jan 2014 $1,235 37
Q2 Poll Apr 2014 $1,278 $1,250 28
Q3 Poll July 2014 $1,277 $,1250 31

 Nickel Falls a Fifth Session Amid China Slowdown Signals

Sept. 15 (Bloomberg) — Nickel and aluminum fell for a fifth session in London as industrial metals declined after factory and retail-sales data added to evidence of a slowing economy in China, the world’s biggest consumer. Copper slid.

Chinese industrial-output growth in August was the weakest since the global financial crisis, while investment and retail sales moderated, figures showed. Factory data due today from the U.S., the second-biggest metals user, will probably indicate activity in August slowed from the previous month, according to a Bloomberg News survey.

“Weak Chinese data weighed on base-complex prices,” RBC Capital Markets Ltd. said in a note today. Commodities slumped to the lowest level in more than five years.

Copper for delivery in December lost 0.8 percent to $3.081 a pound by 8 a.m. on the Comex in New York.

The metal for delivery in three months fell 0.4 percent to $6,808 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange and lead touched the lowest price since June. An index of the six main metals traded on the LME slid the most since March last week.

Industrial output in China rose 6.9 percent from a year earlier in August, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Sept. 13. That’s down from 9 percent in July and the slowest pace outside the January-February Lunar New Year holiday period since December 2008, based on previously reported figures compiled by Bloomberg.

“Prices may well weaken further,” William Adams, an analyst at Fastmarkets.com in London, said in a note today. “We saw last week a combination of weakness and bouts of scale-down buying, and we feel we may see more of the same this week, especially in those metals that have seen strong price gains in recent months.”

Copper stockpiles monitored by the LME fell 0.1 percent to 156,375 tons, daily data showed. Orders to take the metal from warehouses rose to 40,250 tons on bookings in New Orleans and are up 40 percent in three sessions, the most since April 2013.

Tin and zinc declined in London.

Donnycreek Energy Inc. SPECULATIVE BUY

DCK : TSX-V : C$2.18 SPECULATIVE BUY 
Target: C$4.00
COMPANY DESCRIPTION:

Donnycreek is a junior pure play Montney exploration and
development company with assets in Alberta’s Deep
Basin. Donnycreek trades under the symbol “DCK” on the
TSX venture exchange.
All amounts in C$ unless otherwise noted.

Investment recommendation
Donnycreek released a brief operational update this morning on its
operations at Kakwa. The wells on the company’s three well Montney
pad (the company’s first 1.5 mile horizontals) have been successfully
completed and tested, however no test rates were provided with the
release. The company also announced a plant turn-around at Kakwa,
which will shut in production from the block for ~16 days in September,
and plans to expand the plant on the block from 15mmcf/d to 30
mmcf/d in the spring of 2015.
In our view, a fairly neutral release from the company; however, given
the delays in bringing on production at Kakwa, we have lowered our
production estimates for 2014 . Trading at just 3.1x 2015E
EV/DACF and 0.5x Base NAV (lowest NAV multiple in our coverage
universe), we continue to believe DCK is extremely undervalued relative
to its peers.
We continue to rate the stock a Speculative Buy, and look to November
for IP30 rates on the 3 recently completed 1.5 mile Hz’s (in addition to
the large production bump)as significant potential catalysts for the stock.
Highlights from the release
 Kakwa 3 well pad. DCK announced that all three 50% working
interest wells from the company’s first three well pads have been
completed and flow tested . These wells were drilled with
horizontal lengths of 1,900m, which is longer than wells previously
drilled on this acreage. The wells are expected to come on
production in October.
 Facility expansion. Donnycreek and its partners are currently
designing an expansion for its 16-7 facility to double the throughput
capacity to 30 mmcf/d of natural gas and associated liquids. DCK
and its partners plan to start-up the expansion by spring 2015.

Crew Energy Inc.

CR : TSX : C$9.66 BUY 
Target: C$15.00

COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Crew Energy is an intermediate oil and gas company with
a large portfolio of exploration and development
opportunities in western Canada. The company has a
two-pronged approach to corporate development,
supplementing organic growth with strategic acquisitions

Energy — Oil and Gas, Exploration and Production
GROUNDBIRCH EMERGING
Investment recommendation

Crew released second quarter results which generally met expectations
on production and cash flow. More importantly, its operational update
contained early stage but encouraging results from its first two
horizontal wells at Groundbirch, and with further expected news-flow in
H2/14 (Tower & Attachie results and potential A&D activity), we believe
the stock will continue to garner investor interest. We are maintaining
our BUY rating and C$15.00 target price based on an unchanged 1.0x
multiple to NAV and a 7.5x 2015E EV/DACF multiple.
Investment highlights
Q2 in line. Second quarter production averaged 27,200 boe/d in line
with CG/consensus of 27,198/26,637 boe/d. Operating CFPS of $0.39
met our $0.39 estimate and consensus of $0.40.
Early and encouraging Groundbirch results. Crew provided early stage
results from its two recently completed wells (still cleaning up).
Management indicated that the wells are flowing at 4.5 MMcf/d (after 10
days) and 3.5 MMcf/d (after 14 days) and are in the over-pressured
window of the Montney (1.3 to 1.4 times normal pressure). We believe
these results met management’s expectations.
Expressions of interest to purchase Princess have been received. Crew
has received expressions of interest for its Princess property but
cautioned a sale may or may not be consummated. Its commentary
suggested that the received offers would result in an after tax
(accounting) loss on the property of ~$200 to $250 million (based on
book value, which can’t be estimated from our perspective). We believe
a disposition of Princess in the $150 million range would be viewed
positively by the market.

Valuation
Crew currently trades at a 0.7x multiple to CNAV, 5.3x EV/DACF
multiple, and $49,200/BOEPD based on our 2015 estimates, versus peer
group averages of 0.8x CNAV, 6.2x EV/DACF, and $78,200/BOEPD

Cascade Microtech BUY

CSCD : NASDAQ : US$11.92 BUY 
Target: US$15.00

COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Cascade Microtech is a leading developer of advanced
wafer probing solutions and production probe cards used
in the measurement and testing of semiconductor
integrated circuits. Cascade customers use its products
to perform testing of chips while in wafer form in both
engineering and production test environments.

Sustainability — Energy & Power Technologies
CSCD DELIVERS GM UPSIDE.
MAINTAIN BUY. PT TO $15
Investment recommendation
We maintain our BUY rating on CSCD as we believe that
increasing complexity of new materials, tighter specifications and
the increasing cadence of next-generation node shrinks will
continue to drive high-end test and measurement solutions and
earnings leverage for the company.
Investment highlights
 Cascade reported in-line revenues with a beat on the bottom
line. Q3 guidance was below expectations but we expect a
good rebound in the Q4 period as the overall spending
environment rebounds.
 The strength in income this quarter was driven by record
gross margins in both engineering systems and production
probes.
 We expect that Cascade will continue to deliver margin
upside as the higher-margin production probes for RF test
grow as a percentage of sales. Some of this gross margin
benefit may be offset by higher R&D spend in the near-term
but the company’s 20% adjusted EBITDA model remains
intact.
 The company highlighted new partnerships and products in
the quarter, which help give us confidence in its leading
position in semiconductor engineering systems and RF production probes.

Rubicon Technology

RBCN : NASDAQ : US$7.49
HOLD 
Target: $8.00

COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Based outside of Chicago, IL, Rubicon Technology is a
materials company specializing in growing
monocrystalline sapphire products mainly for the LED
and RFIC markets. It supplies 2″, 3″, 4″ and 6″ sapphire
cores and wafers as well as sapphire optical products for
the aerospace and defense market.
All amounts in US$ unless otherwise noted.

Sustainability — Energy & Power Technologies
A FALLING SHARD OF SAPPHIRE?
DOWNGRADING TO HOLD ON ASSET 
VALUATION
Investment recommendation
We believe RBCN has lost share in the sapphire market and its
move to vertically integrate has caused greater than expected
costs and delays in adoption. Despite the negatives, the shares
are trading well below tangible book value and, as such, we are
downgrading to HOLD on the asset valuation.
Investment highlights
 We believe RBCN’s move to vertically integrate has materially
increased its cost structure and is taking longer than
expected to qualify new customers.
 We believe that RBCN’s decision to raise pricing in the
Second Cycle has impaired its relationships with LED
manufacturers and is taking a toll as it bypasses the polishing
houses with its polished and patterned products.
 Our estimates have been materially lowered yet we maintain
a HOLD rating on the company as the shares are trading well
below tangible book value with a solid balance sheet,
minimal cash burn, and NOLs above the share price.

Pengrowth Energy Corporation

PGF : TSX : C$6.82
PGH : NYSE
BUY 
Target: C$8.75

COMPANY DESCRIPTION:
Pengrowth Energy Corporation is an intermediate, dividend paying
E&P focused in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin.
Pengrowth is listed on the TSX & NYSE under the symbols “PGF”
and “PGH” respectively.
All amounts in C$ unless otherwise noted

Energy — Oil and Gas, Exploration and Production
SECURING MARKET ACCESS
Investment recommendation
Pengrowth released second-quarter results which solidly beat on
production and matched cash flow expectations. Key highlights of its
release include 1) the announced transportation services agreement
with Husky Energy to gain market access for its Lindbergh bitumen
volumes, 2) it has spent/committed 90% of costs on Phase I, 3) it
remains on time/budget at Lindbergh and 2014 guidance was reiterated,
and 4) results from its Cardium program continue to improve. We
continue to recommend the stock for an attractive dividend yield, solid
pilot results at Lindbergh, and a meaningful CFPS growth profile. Our
BUY rating and C$8.75 target price remain unchanged based 0.9x NAV
and a 2015E EV/DACF multiple of 8.2 times.
Investment highlights
Q2 in line. Production of 73,823 boe/d solidly beat CG/consensus of
71,735/72,236 boe/d. CFPS of $0.23 generally met our estimate of
$0.23 and consensus of $0.24. Full year 2014 guidance was maintained
except for a slight uptick in G&A expenses.
Securing market access. It announced a transportation services
agreement with Husky Energy (HSE:TSX, BUY rated covered by Phil
Skolnick) which accesses its Alberta Gathering System and includes a 10
year take-or-pay provision (with option for future growth at Lindbergh).
Pengrowth will develop a 15 km pipeline (and meter station) in Q2/15 to
facilitate the tie-in, the cost of which was included in its original budget
for Phase I. This agreement allows PGF numerous market access
options at Hardisty including rail and connectivity to export its bitumen
(WCS type pricing) along several key export pipelines.

Valuation
Pengrowth currently trades at a 0.7x multiple to CNAV, 7.1x EV/DACF
multiple, and $75,100/BOEPD based on our 2015 estimates, versus peer
group averages of 0.8x CNAV, 6.2x EV/DACF, and $78,200/BOEPD.

Bulls Fleeing Natural Gas

Bulls Fleeing Natural Gas as Goldman Sees Further Decline
Speculators are fleeing natural gas after prices dropped below $4 for the first time since December and power plant production fell to a 13-year seasonal low.

Hedge funds reduced net-long positions, or bets on rising prices, by 11 percent in the week ended July 22, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said. Bullish wagers have declined 51 percent since February.

Futures slid as the output from electricity generators, the biggest consumers of the fuel, fell 11 percent in the week ended July 19 from a year earlier to the least for the period since 2001, according to the Edison Electric Institute. Mild weather and a record pace of inventory gains may push prices lower in the next three months, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said.

“The move down in prices this early in the summer is surprising,” Breanne Dougherty, a natural gas analyst at Societe General SA in New York, said in a phone interview on July 25. “The power generation load makes and breaks summers and it’s extremely sensitive to weather.”

Natural gas dropped 7.9 percent to $3.772 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange in the period covered by the CFTC report. The contract for August delivery closed at $3.781 on July 25, capping a sixth weekly decline, the longest stretch of losses since the first quarter of 2010. It was at $3.771 in electronic trading today.

Gas Supply

Gas inventories, which declined to an 11-year low in late March, have rebounded at the fastest pace since 2001, U.S. Energy Information Administration data show.

Stockpiles rose by 90 billion cubic feet to 2.219 trillion in the week ended July 18, a gain bigger than the five-year average for the 14th straight week, according to the EIA.

“While we previously believed that risks to 2014 prices were skewed to the upside, we now see downside risks to U.S. gas prices in the next three months,” Daniel Quigley, a Goldman analyst in London, said in a note on July 22.

Power generation in the lower 48 states totaled 82,614 gigawatt-hours in the seven days ended July 19, the least since the week ended June 13, Edison Electric data show.

This month has been the coolest July since 2009, Matt Rogers, the president of Commodity Weather Group LLC in Bethesda, Maryland, said in an e-mail on July 25. “We’re expecting the cool pattern to continue into August.”

Power Plants

Gas deliveries to power plants dropped 13 percent this month to average 25.9 billion cubic feet a day as of July 25, the lowest for the period since 2009, according to LCI Energy Insight in El Paso, Texas.

Futures may find support between $3.50 and $3.75 for the rest of the stockpiling season, with those prices prompting power plants to switch from coal, Teri Viswanath, the director of commodities strategy at BNP Paribas SA in New York, said by phone on July 24.

“The problem with the emergence of this cool fall-like weather is that we don’t expect to see a slowdown in those inventory injections until the reemergence of heating demand,” she said.

In other markets, the downing of a civilian airplane in Ukraine and crude stockpiles at Cushing, Oklahoma, at a six-year low enticed speculators back to the oil market, boosting bullish bets from a six-month low.

Money managers raised net-long positions in benchmark West Texas Intermediate futures by 7.3 percent to 278,116 futures and options combined in the week ended July 22, CFTC data show. Long positions rose 1.1 percent 307,739 while shorts dropped 35 percent to 29,623.

WTI Jump

WTI futures advanced 4.5 percent to $104.42 a barrel on the Nymex in the period covered by the report. The contract closed at $102.09 on July 25.

Net long gasoline bets fell 22 percent to 34,115. Futures slipped 0.6 percent to $2.8807 a gallon on the Nymex in the week covered by the report and settled at $2.8653 on July 25.

Gasoline at U.S. pumps, averaged nationwide, slid 0.7 cent to $3.543 a gallon on July 24, the lowest since March 28, according to data from Heathrow, Florida-based AAA, the nation’s largest motoring group. Retail prices are down 4.1 percent from a 13-month high on April 26.

Money managers’ bets on ultra-low sulfur diesel flipped to a net short position for the first time since November with 1,520 contracts, the CFTC report showed. Futures fell 0.1 percent to $2.8542 a gallon in the report week and closed at $2.9157 on July 25.

Natural Gas

Net-long positions on four U.S. natural gas contracts declined by 25,772 futures equivalents to 201,090, the least since Dec. 3.

The measure includes an index of four contracts adjusted to futures equivalents: Nymex natural gas futures, Nymex Henry Hub Swap Futures, Nymex ClearPort Henry Hub Penultimate Swaps and the ICE Futures U.S. Henry Hub contract. Henry Hub, in Erath, Louisiana, is the delivery point for Nymex futures, a benchmark price for the fuel.

Long positions fell by 4 percent to 472,613, the least since February 2013. Bearish bets gained 2.3 percent to 271,523, the most since Dec. 10.

“I wouldn’t expect prices to go much lower,” said Societe Generale’s Dougherty. “That said, if we continue to get extremely mild weather as we saw in July through October, we will see a slightly different story.”

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,122 other followers