Gas prices in Europe broke a record again on Tuesday (12/21/2021) on the first day of winter, driven by severe cold and geopolitical tensions between Russia – a key supplier – and consumer countries.

“European natural gas continues its inexorable rise,” Deutsche Bank analysts found, due to temperatures that continue to drop, and the fact that the Russian giant Gazprom did not reserve additional capacity in January for gas that transits Ukraine.

The European benchmark price, the Dutch TTF, gained more than 22% on Tuesday to settle at 180,267 euros per megawatt hour, after peaking at 187,785 euros shortly after 3:00 p.m. GMT.

British gas for January delivery also rose similarly, closing at 451.72 pound cents per therm (a unit of measure of heat), after hitting a high of 470.83 pound cents. they are almost ten times higher than at the beginning of the year.

For some analysts, this level of prices reflects strong demand as temperatures drop and fears about supply grow, since a third of the gas comes from Russia.

When there is an upsurge in tensions on the border in Russia and Ukraine, prices rise, explained several experts in this market.

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned on Tuesday that Russia is prepared to respond with “military and technical measures” to what he called unfriendly actions by Western countries, accusing Moscow of increasing its contingent on the border with Ukraine. , with a view to a possible military operation, an accusation that Russia denies.

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