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Fuel prices fall sharply after retailers panic when market watchdog highlights their greed

By Tom Gibson | November 28, 2023


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The AA has reported that £2 was almost instantly knocked off the cost of a tank of petrol after the Competition and Markets Authority pointed out a discrepancy.

Fuel prices fall sharply after retailers panic when market watchdog highlights their greed

Fuel retailer greed has proven to be a common theme over the last couple of years as, time after time, they implement ‘rocket and feather’ pricing systems to increase and decrease the cost of fuel.

When the price of oil increases they will almost instantly pass on costs to the motorists and then slowly decrease – often over a period of months – to what is deemed to be a fair level way after the price of oil has dropped.

Regit, RAC, The AA and others have all been highlighting this greed over the last 18 months and this has led to the Competition and Markets Authority taking a much keener interest in the pricing practices they’re adopting.

Legislation that comes into force next year will give the Competition and Markets Authority increased powers to gather data and report on unjustified price rises and the threat of additional regulation on top of this is making fuel retailers panic.

So much so, that when the CMA highlighted on 8th November that the gap between pump prices and wholesale costs was 'significantly above the long-term average', retailers collectively managed to find 3.75p per litre that could be taken off the price.

'It's amazing what happens when the watchdog gives the fuel trade a good prod,' said Luke Bosdet at the AA. 'Pump prices fall at twice the speed and £2 comes off the cost of a tank of petrol in a fortnight.'

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said the drop in prices was 'no cause for celebration' though, as drivers are 'losing out massively because retailers refuse to cut their prices'.

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