The RAC is urging retailers to hold firm and not hike pump prices, despite a barrel of oil nearing $100 – a price last seen in September 2014, nearly seven and a half years ago.
The cost of oil has increased by more than 60% in the last 12 months, from around $60 last February, due to global oil production continuing to be out of kilter with demand which is now increasing as the pandemic begins to wane, with a barrel having risen as high as $98 in the last week.
Recent tensions between Ukraine and Russia, with the latter being the world’s third biggest oil producer, have also caused prices to rise.
Nonetheless, based on retailers taking a normal margin of around 6p a litre, RAC Fuel Watch data shows there is no justification for average forecourt prices to rise very much from their current levels of 147.67p for petrol and 151.21p for diesel. But so far in February, retailers have already increased pump prices by around 1p per litre.
Diesel hit an all-time high before the weekend of 151.57ppl and petrol ran it close to 147.72pp.
The RAC said prices could continue rising on the back of supply issues and tensions in Ukraine, the world’s No3 producer.