Petrol prices stabilise after months of rises

3 March 2017

Motorists will be pleased to hear petrol and diesel prices stabilised in February following two months of rises.

According to the RAC’s latest ‘Fuel Watch’ data, unleaded finished the month at 120.23p a litre, a very slight increase on the figure of 120.05p seen on 1 February, with diesel at 122.25p, having started at 122.31p.

This means it now costs £66.13 to fill up an average 55-litre family car with petrol compared to £55.91 a year ago when the average price nationally was 101.65p. A tank of diesel is now £67.27 compared to £55.72 12 months ago when a litre averaged 101.31p.


Stability has been brought about because the price of oil and the sterling/dollar exchange rate have both steadied, keeping wholesale prices in check. A barrel of oil averaged $55 throughout the month and the pound was worth on average $1.25.

But despite only small increases in February, petrol and diesel prices are still at their highest levels since December 2014.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams says: “A month where fuel prices have stayed broadly the same is welcome news. Given the global oil production situation and the weaker pound all we can really hope for at the moment is some continued price stability on the forecourt.”

North East cheapest for fuel

On a regional basis, the North East took Northern Ireland’s title of having the cheapest fuel in the UK with petrol at an average of 119.34p and diesel at 121.19p at the end of February. The South East remains the most expensive place to buy fuel with a litre of petrol costing 120.94p and diesel 123p.


Meanwhile the North West saw the biggest rise in the price of unleaded, albeit only 0.31p and Northern Ireland recorded the largest diesel increase of 0.12p per litre.

The South East recorded the largest diesel price reduction even though it was just -0.18p, while London recorded the smallest increase in unleaded prices of 0.05p.

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