31st July 2013 | Posted by: Daniel Birkett | Market Analysis

Spot prices went down yesterday following an increase in wind generation and a slight improvement in nuclear availability. Exchange prices were considerably lower than OTC prices and the cooler weather in France led to near-term contracts making a loss. Today's prices can also be found in an easy to read table on our 'current UK energy price' page.

How did the energy markets close?

Most gas contracts closed yesterday's session at a discount with Day-Ahead shedding from its price due to low Belgian exports and a drop in demand. Front-Month made a loss of 0.05ppt as two LNG cargoes are expected to arrive in the UK in August. Seasonal contracts were also bearish and were influenced by weaker Brent prices. The power curve did not see any major movement as Day-Ahead and numerous other contracts did not change in price. A few contracts did manage to make a small loss however with falling Brent and lower gas contracts thought to be the main factors.

How did the energy markets open?

The system initially opened 3mcm long but sharply fell to 12mcm short which led to the Day-Ahead making a loss. Gas flows were reduced with Bacton BBL flows decreasing by 5mcm and flows via the seal pipeline falling by 7mcm. The rest of the curve saw further gains as maintenance is scheduled to take place at a number of Norwegian facilities. Seasonal contracts also added to their price and made gains of up to 0.25ppt. Most contracts on the power curve followed a similar direction to gas and went up this morning. Day-Ahead added £0.75/MWh to its price but only minor gains were seen further along the curve as weaker Brent restricted the bulls.

1-year forward prices

Market close data has revealed that the 1-year forward price for both commercial gas & commercial electricity made gains - closing at 68.43ppt and £51.90/MWh, respectively. This can be seen in the graph below. Note: Brent Crude prices are taken from opening market data, and do not represent the price as it changes throughout the day.

Latest Brent Crude Oil prices

Brent prices decreased yesterday and the Brent/ WTI spread widened, although gasoline cracks saw an improvement. According to the latest API report; US crude inventories fell by 0.7Mb, distillate inventories saw a drop of 0.5Mb and gasoline stock prices increased by 1.8Mb. There is also a strike at Libya's largest oil refinery which could have a significant effect on prices if it is not resolved soon.