Gas prices were highly volatile in October and significantly more expensive than in the previous month of September. This was mainly due to the risk premiums caused by the escalation in the Middle East, as the fundamental data in October was weak. The price level would probably have been significantly lower without this crisis. An overview.
Temperatures in October 3 degrees above normal
At 13.3°C, average daily temperatures in Germany in October were around 3 degrees above the seasonal norm. The mild trend could continue in the first half of November. The temperature forecasts up to the middle of the month in Germany are around 3 degrees above the seasonal average, with daily averages of up to 10° C.
Gas demand in Germany was correspondingly weak in October at a total of 58.4 TWh, around 26% below the average for 2018 to 2022. Last year, October was just as mild, with gas demand at around 55 TWh even 6% lower than recently.
Gas demand in European countries in October totaled just under 274 TWh, down 23% on the five-year average. This was even lower than the weak figure for October 2022, when gas demand amounted to 277.2 TWh.
Gas storage almost completely full
Due to the mild temperatures in October, it was possible to continue injecting gas, albeit only to a limited extent due to the full gas storage facilities. As a result, the EU’s storage capacity increased by almost 43 TWh in October (38% more than the five-year average), meaning that 1132 TWh of working gas was stored at a level of over 99%.
LNG shipments in the EU rose by around 16% compared to the previous month to just under 122 TWh. At the beginning of the year, however, monthly shipments were still at over 160 TWh per month.
LNG imports recover compared to the previous month
A total of 134 LNG tankers arrived at European LNG terminals in October, 15 more arrivals than in the previous month and the highest figure since June of this year, when 138 cargoes were imported.
57 shipments of the total of 134 deliveries came from the USA, 17 deliveries each came from Russia and Algeria and 14 deliveries came from Qatar. The USA has shipped a total of 582 LNG deliveries to Europe this year and dominates the European LNG market with a market share of 44 percent.
The reason for the decline in demand was the weak development in China. The country only imported 59 shipments in October, the lowest figure since April of this year. In previous months, up to 77 shiploads were recorded.
Japan with strongest LNG demand worldwide
Japan, China, Korea, Taiwan and India, the five countries with the highest demand for LNG in Asia, imported a total of 253 ship deliveries in October, 12 deliveries less than in September.
Japan remains the country with the highest demand for LNG in October. The country imported 81 LNG cargoes last month. In the current year, imports have accumulated to 755 deliveries, which corresponds to 56 percent of total European LNG imports.
Norwegian gas exports at six-month high
At 104 TWh, Norwegian gas exports via pipeline recovered significantly in October compared to the previous month (58 TWh) and were at their highest level since April of this year. Due to the intensive maintenance periods in recent months, Norway’s total exports in the current year are around 6 percent below the five-year average at 973 TWh.
At just under 29 TWh, Algerian pipeline gas exports in October were around 10% lower than in the previous month. At just under 29 TWh, Russian gas exports via pipeline in October also confirmed their steady trend since the all-time low of 19.5 TWh in June of this year.
Gas deliveries from Azerbaijan at an all-time high
Russian gas deliveries via the Turkstream pipeline to Bulgaria were close to capacity for the fourth consecutive month, most recently at just under 15 TWh per month.
Azerbaijani gas deliveries to the transfer point in Italy reached a new all-time high of 11.8 TWh in October.