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As the weather breaks and the cherry blossoms begin to bloom, this time of the year marks the conclusion of one the warmest winters in the DMV’s history. Gradually increasing carbon emissions and a warm El-Nino event contributed to a 2023-24 DC winter that saw the 5th highest average temperature in the district’s history (43.0℉) as well as an 80℉ January afternoon*.

Although this hints at a more-concerning trend of globally increasing temperatures, a silver lining has emerged in the form of low gas supply rates. The below chart comes from and provides up-to-the-minute wholesale natural gas prices. At the time of this writing, the wholesale price was $0.184 / therm.

Conversions from MMBTUs to dekatherms (1 dekatherm = 1 therm) are made below for simplicity’s sake.

Chart 1: Natural Gas Wholesale Prices 2022-24**

Chart 2: Natural Gas Wholesale Prices 2019-24**

As seen in Chart 2, we are currently in a strong downswing that has resulted in the lowest pricing since June 2020. It should be noted that the 2020 dip coincided with economic fallout from the beginning of the pandemic, whilst this current pricing reflects the high supply/ low demand state of the market due to this warm winter. Pricing has fallen off a cliff since 2022, when we saw wholesale rates reach nearly $1 / therm in August, and has rejected the momentum of the back half of 2023 that led up to January 2024 wholesaling pricing of $0.3337/ therm.

With wholesale rates, and subsequent market rates, at 4-year lows, now is a great time to lock into fixed pricing agreements. The status-quo suggests a significant increase in pricing as we move into the summer, leaving ratepayers with a short window to maintain this pricing. 

While wholesale rates are highly correlated with retail rates, other factors play into the prices you will see offered from third party suppliers in the DMV region. Namely, local supply and demand factors weigh heavily. As such, do not expect rates to be as low as they were in 2020, when it was not uncommon to see fixed price options below 40¢. Currently, we are seeing local rates in the high 40s¢ and low 50s¢ range. Interestingly, longer term agreements are at higher rates than shorter term agreements, a reversal from the previous decade. This signals that third party suppliers are anticipating significant natural gas price increases in each of the next 4 years.

If you want to take advantage of these market dynamics, please reach out to a Honeydew Energy Advisor in the form below and check out our utility procurement page. We shop rates from over 30 providers to ensure you receive the lowest fixed rate available.

*Laudicina, Christopher P. “Washington DC Weather | Wusa9.Com.” WUSA9, Accessed 29 Mar. 2024.

**“Natural Gas Futures Chart.” Investing.Com, Accessed 19 Mar. 2024.