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Dollar’s Decline Doesn’t Dramatically Drive Up Fue

Dollar’s Decline Doesn’t Dramatically Drive Up Fuel Prices

August saw a large fall in the value of the New Zealand dollar against the US currency – from a high of 80 cents in late July to under 69 cents at one point – but despite the big drop fuel prices only rose 3 cents per litre during the month.

Prices for 91 octane started the month at $1.54/litre in the main centres, with diesel retailing for $1.03. By mid-August, all fuels rose by 3 cents per litre, ending the month on $1.57 and $1.06 respectively.

“The price rise was wholly attributable to the falling NZ dollar, and could have been greater if it were not for falling international crude and refined product prices throughout most of the month. This helped cushion the blow for motorists from the declining exchange rate,” said AA General Manager of Motoring Affairs, Mike Noon.

“This combined effect meant oil companies were able to keep retail prices largely in check, although we note that refined product prices were rising towards the end of August, and this flowed through to motorists with a further increase of 3 cents per litre (4c/l for diesel) on 4 September,” Mr Noon said.

Overall, international crude prices fell by 9.6% during the course of the month, with diesel falling and rising during the month, ultimately dropping just 1% by month end. Refined petrol prices fell as much as 10% during August, but after a late rally, ended the month 3.9% down compared to the end of July.

Twelve months ago, motorists were paying $1.62/litre for 91 octane, and $1.22/litre for diesel, when the exchange rate was around 65 US cents.


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