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All About Energy

My 1.2¢ Electricty Rate Mistake

JB Sowyrda Aug 23, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Like most people looking for a residential electricity plan, you scour the internet in search of the cheapest available rate. When you finally find a list of offers, an enticing 1.2¢ rate appears at the top of the search.


1.2 cents! Currently, wholesale electricity prices fall into the 2-3¢ range - making a 1.2¢ rate seem to good too be true. I guess that means, even experts in energy are suspicious of how such a low rate can be possible.


I needed to ask myself a few questions.  Is this 1.2¢ rate actually cheaper than say a 5.5¢ rate? And if so, how do those numbers add up? Even though I asked myself these questions and had a general idea of the answers before contracting my residential electricity, I decided to sign up to get the answers firsthand.


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What do falling rig counts mean for your electricity bill?

JB Sowyrda Jul 11, 2016 8:43:12 AM

Forecasting energy prices is
always a tricky business, given the many variables at play. But sometimes a data point flashes like a neon sign that says: Watch what this means for your electricity bills.


Such is the case today with drilling ‘rig counts’ – the number of rigs used to actively explore for natural gas. This year, rig counts dropped to an all-time low in the United States, according to data collected since 1940.

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It's Okay To Do Something Different With Your Budget.

JB Sowyrda Feb 23, 2016 3:07:09 PM

Are you ready to hit the "reset" button on your energy budget?

It's no surprise that after a holiday period of feasting and indulging, many Americans wake up on January 1st with the resolve to "cut the fat" and "do better" this year than they did last year.  The same goals can be applied to how you manage your company's energy spend.

 I meet with businesses and governmental entities on a daily basis and I keep hearing the same story over and over.  Tell me if you've heard one of these or if this is the story of your situation: "I know I'm paying too much, but I don't have the time to shop around."  "I don't like change." "Finance just cut my budget... again."  "Something has to change, but I don't even know where to start."

Let's just go ahead and press the reset button now.

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The Force Awakens with Natural Gas Today

JB Sowyrda Dec 17, 2015 12:02:00 PM

Even though Jan 16’ is trading in the $1.80 range, buyers need to pay close attention to outer months, winter 16'-17' to be specific if you have a Q3/4 start date.  The latter half of the year is seeing an uptick of about $0.06-$0.07 and is creating a near $1.00 delta between promt month (Jan 16') and promt plus 12 months out (Jan-Feb 17').  

The near-term impact isn't significant right now as prices remain subdued, but a combination of economic events and winter finally appearing will likely help rally the bulls towards the latter part of 16'.  With that being said, the spikes expected towards the tail end of 16' could be short lived as E&Ps reverse course as economics improve.    

As we have seen, the excess gas in storage among other things have driven prices down to levels not seen in 10+ years; just the same, any shortage will likely drive the prices back up.  In my opinion, the combination of winter finally showing up this coming Jan. and Feb., the lowest drilling activity in decades, and oil and gas companies being out of cash to invest, the low prices we're seeing now will ultimately result in lower storage numbers heading into next winter, causing a spike in prices.  Oil and Gas companies will then increase their activity and drive prices down again in 2017.

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It's Getting Hot in Here... El Niño's on a Roll

JB Sowyrda Dec 10, 2015 4:37:31 PM

It may come as no surprise to anyone that the El Niño we are experiencing is expected to be one of the top three strongest episodes for the Niño 3.4 region since 1950.  According to NOAA and many other models,  the strong, mature El Niño we are currently experiencing will continue through the Northern Hemisphere this winter and then slowly roll off into an El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO)-neutral stage in late spring or early summer.

From NOAA's Climate Prediction Center: Seasonal outlooks indicate an increased likelihood of above-median precipitation across the southern tier of the United States, and below-median precipitation over the northern tier of the United States.

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A Nation Divided (into 5 Natural Gas Storage Regions)

JB Sowyrda Dec 9, 2015 3:54:12 PM

To better represent the changing geographic dynamics of natural gas storage across the United States, the EIA has re-districted the storage regions into five groups and will now include Alaska. 



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Winter is coming... but nothing cool is happening.

JB Sowyrda Dec 3, 2015 2:05:40 PM

Working natural gas storage fell below expectations to 3,956 Bcf, a net 53 Bcf decrease as compared to the previous week.

Gas storage surplus is now at 15.9% as compared to the same period last year and still remains above the five-year average (3,709 Bcf).

So what is the situation with natural gas right now?

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How the Power to Choose Benefits Your Bottom Line

JB Sowyrda Nov 10, 2015 8:07:00 AM


Choosing an electricity provider can be difficult. There are over 45 retail electricity suppliers in Texas jockeying for your business.  How did we get to this point?  How does deregulation impact my business? What is the best rate, and how do I know what supplier will best fit my needs? The power to choose your electric provider allows you to lower operating costs and gives you more control over your energy policy. 

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