A Bookkeeping Error Adds To Heating Bills Statewide

While it has been a relatively mild winter, it may not feel that way for people who heat their homes with natural gas. Heating bills in New York State have increased by more than 20 percent since last winter as the price for natural gas has gone through the roof. But for some people the spike is even bigger because they are still feeling the effects of a bookkeeping error that sent the gas market haywire in November. It all started around noon on Nov. 24 when a federal agency known as the Energy Information Administration issued its weekly report on natural gas inventories. The report indicated erroneously that there would be one-third as much gas put into storage that week as the industry expected, sending energy traders on a buying frenzy.

By IAN URBINA

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