SOURCE: The Bedford Report

The Bedford Report

February 16, 2011 11:25 ET

Even a Cold Winter Can't Heat Up the Natural Gas Market

The Bedford Report Provides Analyst Research on Southwestern Energy and Apache Corp

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - February 16, 2011) - Natural gas has rebounded modestly in 2011 as a cooler than normal winter has helped supplies drop. However, natural gas storage levels continue to remain well above 5-year historical averages, leading many producers to reduce drilling until natural gas becomes more valuable. Some producers have even expressed interest in selling their stakes in shale fields, arguing that natural gas prices are likely to remain low for the foreseeable future. The Bedford Report examines investing opportunities in natural gas and provides research reports on Southwestern Energy Co. (NYSE: SWN) and Apache Corporation (NYSE: APA). Access to the full company reports can be found at:

The reason for the drop in natural gas prices was simply supply and demand. Natural gas supplies have grown in recent years as new technologies have made it easier for producers to unlock previously unreachable reservoirs in onshore shale formations.

In addition, natural gas is expensive to drill and energy companies are required to sign leases that require that they keep producing. This has led to shrinking bottom lines for natural gas producers such as Southwestern Energy and Apache.

The Bedford Report releases regular market updates on the natural gas sector so investors can stay ahead of the crowd and make the best investment decisions to maximize their returns. Take a few minutes to register with us free at and get exclusive access to our numerous analyst reports and industry newsletters.

While the industry tries to reduce its ballooning supply, some companies involved in natural gas drilling in shale formations are caught up in legal battles. Marcellus Shale -- which stretches under Pennsylvania, New York, West Virginia and Ohio -- has become the centre of focus of many oil & gas companies and is seeing a growing number of complaints due to the risks of contamination of water reserves in the area. In fact Activist shareholder groups announced they have filed resolutions with nine oil and gas companies that use hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," to extract gas from shale formations thousands of feet underground. Drilling is booming in Pennsylvania and West Virginia but New York has restricted drilling until environmental questions about the potential threat of the technology can be answered.

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