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PetrolWatch – February 2013: Fuel prices reach 6-month high

1 March 2013

PetrolWatch – February 2013: Fuel prices reach 6-month high

Motorists received a rude shock during late January and February, with petrol prices rising 11 cents a litre, or over 5 percent, in the space of a fortnight.

After increasing 4 cents on 31 January, petrol prices climbed another 7 cents to end February on $2.21 per litre in the main centres. This was the highest price since August 2012 and just 2 cents shy of the highest price ever recorded. Diesel prices rose 5 cents to finish on $1.55 per litre at most service stations, some 37 cents below the record diesel price in July 2008.

“Despite the strong exchange rate, retail prices rose sharply due to increasing commodity prices, with crude oil prices reaching their highest level since April 2012,” says AA PetrolWatch spokesperson Mark Stockdale.

“The last time oil prices were this high, we were paying $2.20 per litre for petrol, when the Kiwi dollar was worth 82 US cents and taxes were 2 cents lower,” Mr Stockdale added.

According to AA PetrolWatch, the imported cost of petrol rose 11 cents per litre, and diesel 7 cents, between 18 January and 13 February.

“However, at the end of February the imported cost of petrol fell nearly 4 cents per litre, and diesel 2 cents, despite a reduction in the exchange rate. At current commodity prices, the fuel companies’ importer margins have risen above average, so the AA would expect retailers to cut pump prices shortly,” Mr Stockdale said.

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