The eastern U.S. and Canada are expected to be warmer-than-normal for this time of year by mid- March, with high temperatures near 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15.5 Celsius) in Chicago and Philadelphia, forecasters said.
Temperatures may reach 15 degrees above normal from the northern Great Plains and Great Lakes to Hudson Bay in Canada, according to an 11- to 15-day outlook from MDA EarthSat Weather in Gaithersburg, Maryland.
“This setup will diminish typical heating demand across the North, where highs may consistently reach into the 60s in places like Chicago and Philadelphia,” MDA said in the forecast for March 12 to March 16.
Traders watch temperature predictions to gauge energy use and demand. About 51 percent of U.S. households use natural gas for heating, according to the Energy Department.
The U.S. will begin to get warmer next week, as temperatures from Texas to Massachusetts may reach 6 degrees above normal, according to David Salmon, a meteorologist with Weather Derivatives in Belton, Missouri.
The Ohio Valley region may be as much as 10 degrees above normal, Salmon said in his 6- to 10-day outlook for March 8 to March 12.
The normal average temperature in New York for March 7 is about 40 degrees, according to MDA. It’s 36 in Boston, 41 in Philadelphia, 35 in Chicago, 43 in St. Louis, 56 in Dallas, 61 in Houston, 52 in Atlanta, 45 in Seattle and 58 in Burbank, California.
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