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Petrol prices jump to 4-year high

  • August 26 2019
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Invest

Petrol prices jump to 4-year high

By Grace Ormsby
August 26 2019

Think you have been paying more at the petrol pump lately? You aren’t imagining it.

Petrol pump

Petrol prices jump to 4-year high

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  • August 26 2019
  • Share

Think you have been paying more at the petrol pump lately? You aren’t imagining it.

Petrol pump

According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), the annual average retail petrol price in 2018-19 was the highest in real terms (adjusted for inflation) in four years.

The weak Australian dollar is partially attributable to the cost increase, which is nearly seven cents per litre higher than it was just one year ago.

Without adjusting for inflation, the price is the highest annual average price in five years.

According to ACCC chair Rod Sims, “The most significant contributor to this increase was the depreciation over the year in the AUD-USD exchange rate, which decreased by USD 0.06 to USD 0.72.”

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“This was the lowest annual average AUD-USD exchange rate in the last 15 years,” he outlined, highlighting the AUD–USD exchange rate as a significant determinant of Australia’s retail petrol prices.

This is “because international refined petrol is bought and sold in US dollars in global markets”, Mr Sims explained.

Another principal driver of the increase that has had most of the impact in the last quarter is the rising price of crude oil and refined petrol internationally, according to the ACCC.

It said prices “continue to be influenced by the agreements made since late-2016 by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) cartel, and some other crude oil producing countries, including Russia, to cut production”.

The impact on consumers

According to the ACCC, a significant development in the Australian petrol market for the first half of 2019 was the change in price setter at both Coles Express (to Viva Energy) and Woolworths (to EG Group).

The report said that compared with market average prices, Coles Express prices were lower in most capital cities after Viva Energy began setting prices.

However, the price still remained above market average prices in all eight capital cities.

The opposite occurred with regard to Woolworths, where it was reported that prices were higher in most capital cities after EG Group took over the retail sites, although in the majority of cities, prices were still below the market average price.

Mr Sims said it is important for motorists to shop around for cheap fuel by using available fuel price websites and apps.

Petrol prices jump to 4-year high
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About the author

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Grace is a journalist on Momentum Media's nestegg. She enjoys being able to provide easy to digest information and practical tips for Australians with regard to their wealth, as well as having a platform on which to engage leading experts and commentators and leverage their insight.

About the author

Grace is a journalist on Momentum Media's nestegg. She enjoys being able to provide easy to digest information and practical tips for Australians with regard to their wealth, as well as having a platform on which to engage leading experts and commentators and leverage their insight.

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