The nation's natural gas supplies rose last week by about as much as analysts expected, the government said Thursday.
The Energy Department's Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that natural gas held in underground storage in the lower 48 states grew by 73 billion cubic feet to 2.906 trillion cubic feet for the week ended Aug. 19.
Analysts expected a rise of 72 billion and 76 billion cubic feet, according to a survey by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.
The inventory level was 1.9 percent below the five-year average of 2.961 trillion cubic feet, and 4.6 percent below last year's level of 3.046 trillion cubic feet, according to the government data.
Natural gas rose 5 cents to $3.972 per 1,000 cubic feet in the New York.