This may spark the next big move in natural gas

As temperatures around the U.S. heat up, investor interest in natural gas is quickly cooling.

The commodity continues to face pressure from record supply and low demand thanks to unusually warm winter temperatures. Natural gas prices hit a new year-to-date low on Monday morning, before making slight gains.

But natural gas may see a big boost as planting season picks up in the spring, according to Phillip Streible, senior market strategist at RJO Futures. The use of natural gas in fertilizing crops bumps up demand.

"The big next move for natural gas may be ... when the farmers start planting," Streible said Friday on CNBC's "Trading Nation."

A warmer summer could also contribute to a rise in natural gas prices, Streible said. Natural gas typically sees a seasonal peak in winter from residential and commercial consumption, and another seasonal peak in the summer from electric power used in cooling. But until supply lowers, Streible said, it's unlikely that natural gas prices will see any sustainable moves higher.

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Storage data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration released Friday showed natural gas supply up more than 24 percent from a year ago and 26 percent above the five-year average.

In the shorter term, technician Craig Johnson of Piper Jaffray only sees the commodity heading lower.

"At this point in time, we're still making lower lows and lower highs," Johnson said Friday on "Trading Nation" and "taking out levels we haven't seen in multiple years."

Johnson expects natural gas to find critical support at $1.65 per 1 million British thermal units. If prices break below that level, natural gas could be headed to $1.30 next, a 28 percent drop from where it traded on Monday.

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Sara Eisen

Sara Eisen joined CNBC in December 2013 as a correspondent, focusing on the global consumer. She is co-anchor of the 10AM ET hour of CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" (M-F, 9AM-11AM ET), broadcast from Post 9 at the New York Stock Exchange.

In March 2018, Eisen was named co-anchor of CNBC's "Power Lunch" (M-F, 1PM-3PM ET), which broadcasts from CNBC Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.

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