Neutral conditions persist in the equatorial Pacific Ocean, though a return to La Niña towards the end of 2011 cannot be ruled out. Trends over the past fortnight include further cooling of the central Pacific Ocean, persistent positive Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) values and stronger than normal trade winds. However, cloud patterns are currently close to normal, and all indicators remain well short of the strong La Niña conditions evident at the same time last year.
The majority of international climate model forecasts of ENSO predict that neutral conditions are likely to continue into the southern spring. While no models suggest El Niño conditions are likely, half of the models predict further cooling over the coming season and into the southern summer.