An uphill battle to refill European gas storages

Injections into European storages were 33% below the 5 year normal in May, exacerbating an already tight storage picture following the extended withdrawal season into April. There has been a distinct lack of pipeline supply response to high hub prices, while robust Asian LNG demand (driven by a strong economic recovery in China and tight power markets across the JKTC region) has seen reduced LNG imports into Europe compared to 2019-20.

While storage levels hover only 4% over 5 year lows, pronounced backwardation in the TTF curve after the coming winter represents the market betting on an improved supply picture into 2022, as the likelihood of NordStream 2 coming online this year improves.