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Petrol prices creep up for a second month in a row

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

The average price of petrol increased by 1p per litre in July and 2p since June as the oil price has jumped to $85.

A litre of unleaded now costs an average 145p and has recorded the second monthly rise as retailers “waste no time in passing on” wholesale costs to drivers, according to the RAC Fuel Watch.

The wholesale price of petrol rose 6p a litre from 19 July following the price of oil increasing $10 a barrel in the month to $85.56.

According to the RAC Fuel Watch, this is a price not seen since mid-April and means filling up a 55-litre family car now costs £79.75.

However, the price of diesel has stayed the same at 146p a litre, ending a run of eight months of falling prices.

Here filling up a 55-litre tank would cost drivers £80.21.

‘Better times at the pump are over for now’

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams, said: “July marks a turning point in the year for fuel prices as diesel stopped falling while petrol recorded its second consecutive monthly increase. But more concerning is the fact that oil has gone back up to $85 a barrel, causing wholesale prices to rise significantly. While we’re fortunately not in the kind of upward price spiral we experienced last year, it feels like the better times at the pump are over for the time being. If oil producers continue to curb production then bigger forecourt price rises could be on the cards.

“This has led to a squeeze on retailer margins which were too large, so we’re currently seeing a return to them making an amount per litre more similar to their longer-term averages. The big question now is how quickly and how far pump prices rise. We sincerely hope we won’t see them shoot up like the proverbial rocket as this would indicate the Competition and Markets Authority’s fuel market investigation findings and recommendations have not had an immediate impact. Encouragingly, there has so far been very little upward movement from the big four supermarkets but only time will tell.”

Cheap petrol app

Last month, the RAC launched its free myRAC app which shows drivers the cheapest fuel prices across the country. It said drivers could save up to £172 a year (up to 6p a litre less).

Earlier this week, supermarket giant Asda confirmed it would display live pump prices on its website.

The latest fuel prices will be available on the store locator page at 10.30am each morning and will show the previous day’s closing price.