Fuel prices continue upward trajectory

Petrol prices rose nearly 2p a litre last month, meaning average prices have risen almost 6p since the start of the year.

Prices rose from 144.62p to 146.48p, while diesel went up from 154.68p to 155.99p to mark the third consecutive month of price hikes.

According to RAC Fuel Watch, higher prices were driven by an increase in the cost of wholesale petrol, with retailer margins down from 10.5p a litre at the start of March to 8p by month’s end.

It also revealed that Asda is no longer the cheapest retailer, with Tesco now offering the cheapest average petrol prices across its 511 forecourts, and the joint cheapest diesel with Sainsbury’s.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “The rising cost of oil, combined with the pound still only being worth $1.3, has led to another month of misery at the pumps with the price of petrol going up 2p a litre. Sadly, this means the average price of petrol has gone up nearly 6p so far this year.

“On a more positive note, it’s good to see the average retailer margin on petrol come down from 10.5p a litre at the start of March to under 8p. While the cause is most likely to be the increase in the wholesale price of petrol, it could also be due to the CMA again raising concerns about higher retailer margins very publicly just last week.”