Tortoise Senior Portfolio Manager Rob Thummel in MarketWatch

U.S. natural gas prices just hit a 13-year high. Blame coal, say analysts

Natural-gas futures settle Thursday at a level not seen since Dec. 2008

Natural-gas futures settled Thursday at their highest price since December 2008, with a rise in coal prices, tight supplies and global worries about energy supplies contributing to a price gain of more than 70% for the fuel so far this year.

U.S. natural-gas prices are “sensitive to any near-term supply concerns created by events like a ban on Russia coal exports, abnormally cold weather,” or Russian natural-gas export issues, given tight global supplies, said Rob Thummel, portfolio manager at Tortoise.

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