The INI/CPC ENSO outlook has recently been updated. Sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies in the NINO 3.4 region are currently around +0.5 degrees (C). The forecast calls for a peak of El Niño conditions this fall or winter before trending back towards neutral by spring.
Why this is important?
I have annotated the hurricane and winter/spring seasons. Assuming this outlook is accurate, El Niño conditions will prevail during the remainder of hurricane season and at least the early part of the winter/spring recharge season. It is possible that conditions could moderate close to neutral for the latter part of recharge season.
El Niño conditions tend to provide an increase in wind shear which can disrupt tropical activity. For this season, it seems like this will not play a significant role. Other key parameters are positive for an increase in hurricane activity which likely will offset an increasing El Niño.
The ENSO state will be more important during the peak recharge season. For most of the Southeast U.S. (but not all), a moderate or strong El Niño can increase chances for above-normal rainfall.