Retailers make shocking petrol profit, says RAC

Retailers are continuing to put up fuel prices when they should reduce them in line with savings in wholesale oil prices, the RAC motoring services organisation has claimed.

In response to concerns about the Omicron variant, oil prices fell by around $10 a barrel last week.

But this reduced wholesale fuel price has not been reflected at the pumps.

Retailers added on average another 3.1p to a litre of unleaded petrol and 2.7p to diesel in November.

The RAC said this hike in petrol prices was “completely unjustified”, with larger retailers making a “shocking” profit.

In particular, the RAC pointed the finger at supermarket chains who are major fuel retailers, such as Asda, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Morrisons, saying they should have reduced prices, but had instead increased them “unnecessarily”.

“Since Covid they’ve been far more reluctant to pass on any savings, even though the frequency with which they buy means they are in a position to pass on any savings in the wholesale price to drivers far more quickly,” RAC fuel spokesperson Simon Williams told the BBC.

“It would be much fairer if retailers mirrored wholesale prices more closely on a daily or weekly basis.”

A spokesperson from the British Retail Consortium said: “Supermarkets are keen to provide their customers with the best value for petrol through their forecourts, offering the cheapest petrol in the country.

“However, prices at the pump will be influenced by various forces, including tax, oil prices and operational costs.”


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