Ethane struggled, both in price and in the spread, at Mont Belvieu, Texas, last week but the rest of the NGL recorded strong results on average, especially in light of stern warnings from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to prepare for an outbreak of COVID-19.

However, the warning on Feb. 25 from Dr. Nancy Messonnier, the director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases shook global markets, dragging WTI back below $50 per barrel (bbl) and leaving the U.S. benchmark Henry Hub price of natural gas to languish at around $1.85 per million British thermal units (MMBtu), about 10 cents lower than at the start of the week.

And as the virus continued to spread across Europe, the Middle East and Latin America, so did the dread in the markets. WTI slumped below $49/bbl on Feb. 26, Henry Hub slipped to $1.821/MMBtu and while the Dow Jones industrial average held relatively steady, the S&P Oil & Gas index suffered a hit of almost 5%.

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