Natural gas futures surged to Rs 191.30 per mmBtu on January 4 as participants increased their long positions as seen by the open interest. Natural gas price had declined Rs 2.10 or 1.12 percent last week on the MCX.

The number of rigs drilling natural gas in the US was unchanged at 83 rigs for the week to December 31, said Baker Hughes in a weekly report.

Natural gas prices were supported by rising US exports and forecast of cold weather which may increase heating demand.

MCX iCOMDEX Natural Gas Index inched higher 72.74 points, or 3.18 percent to 2,358.23.

In the futures market, natural gas for January delivery touched an intraday high of Rs 193.60 and an intraday low of Rs 189.10 per mmBtu on MCX. So far in the current series, natural gas has touched a low of Rs 167.40 and a high of Rs 255.90.

Natural gas delivery for January rose Rs 5.90, or 3.18 percent, to Rs 191.30 per mmBtu at 14:17 hours IST with a business turnover of 10,821 lots.

Natural gas delivery for January gained Rs 5.30, or 2.86 percent, to Rs 190.80 per mmBtu with a business volume of 1,060 lots.

The value of January and February’s contracts traded so far is Rs 903.19 crore and Rs 21.30 crore, respectively.

Natural gas price edged higher in last trading session and it closed higher above 20 and 60 days EMA which is a positive sign for prices and the Relative Strength Index (RSI) is above 60 levels indicating higher momentum, said Axis Securities.

The brokerage firm advised its clients to buy Natural Gas around Rs 185 level for the target of Rs 188-191 on an intraday basis.

At 08:52 (GMT), the natural gas price was up 2.99 percent quoting at $2.61 per mmBtu in New York.