Commercial and residential customers who are buying their natural gas from Dominion East Ohio (DEO) or Columbia Gas of Ohio (CGO) pay the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) month-end commodity price plus a “retail adder”. The NYMEX settlement price at the end of July was $4.37 per thousand cubic feet (Mcf), up slightly from $4.357 at the end of June. DEO’s “retail adder” is $1.00 per Mcf. DEO’s variable Standard Choice Offer (SCO) rate will increase from $5.357 per Mcf to $5.37 per Mcf for the month beginning on August 11th. CGO’s “retail adder”is $0.188 per hundred cubic feet (CCF). CGO’s Standard Service Offer (SSO) variable rate for August is $0.625 per hundred cubic feet (CCF), up from $0.6237 per CCF for July. Even with this slight-up-tick in the NYMEX, natural gas prices are low and expected to remain low, as discussed in this John Funk article from Saturday’s Plain Dealer: Fixed natural-gas rate may be pricier choice this winter. A key reason for this is the abundance of natural gas reserves that have been found in the shale, as discussed in this article from Saturday’s Plain Dealer: Gov. Kasich touts oil and gas reserves . We agree with John Funk’s recommendation that buying natural gas from the utility’s variable rate plan is usually the best deal.