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  1. Feet of snow will continue to bless ski resorts from Colorado to Utah and California well into January, with New England ski areas benefitting from a foot or more of snow by December 30th. While snows have been a consistent feature for many U.S. ski resorts, natural gas prices have whip-sawed with a volatile weather pattern since November. “This has been a much more difficult winter forecast to predict with a whole host of different analog years to look at from the past. Most weak La Nina events do portend an overall cold January-March weather pattern, but several other variables suggest lots of volatility in the U.S. pattern.” Late last week we started seeing unusual colds and snows in Eurasia starting to predict a building ridge over Alaska by early January. Called a negative EPO (Eastern Pacific Oscillation Index), this feature can sometimes also force the polar vortex south and influence the formation of a negative Arctic Oscillation Index (negative AO). If this occurs then a much more steady, consistent rally in natural gas will occur throughout the month. I did a study with respect to the big snows out west and a weakening La Nina. 2004 comes up for a good analog for January. A strong -WPO and snow cover over Eurasia, should help the AO/NAO index go more negative than most feel. Hence, buying natural gas and the ETF UNG may be a good trade with colder January weather. Also, coffee prices have collapsed in recent weeks due to the strong dollar and good recent global crops. But, flooding rains to Vietnam where Robusta coffee (instant coffee) is produced will delay their harvest. Also, I see dry weather returning to parts of northern Brazil where much of the world's higher quality coffee is produced. After a 30% break in coffee futures, look to buy the ETF JO. Commodity ETF's are much less risky then commodity futures and you can buy them just like a stock through your broker. For those of you who want to learn about commodity trading, weather has a huge impact in everything from natural gas to coffee, soybeans, cocoa, etc. You can learn all about this from my new web site at THE AO/NAO may go more negative than most feel in the weeks ahead. Submit a Comment