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Price of diesel hovers near 2009 low

The organisation’s Fuel Watch data shows that diesel is still not far off the lowest price since December 2009, which was recorded in the first week of September at 109.76p.

The average price of petrol fell for the fourth consecutive month with a further 1.6p being shaved off a litre in October. Unleaded finished the month at 107.82p, down from 109.45p at the start.

The RAC added that the oil price remains below $50 a barrel despite a 2% increase throughout the month. The RAC Fuel Watch report for October showed a barrel of crude maintained an average price of $48 a barrel, although there was greater fluctuation in October than in previous months with a five-day spell early on where a barrel went over $50 and a dramatic dip towards the end of the month when a barrel hit $45.95 (27 October) – this was almost as low as mid-January ($45.26) when petrol was the lowest it had been for six years (106.09p).

The pound made 2% gain on the dollar ($1.51 to $1.54) helping to keep the wholesale price of petrol and diesel lower as both fuels are traded in dollars.

The RAC also said it is currently expecting little change in pump prices over the next fortnight.

However RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams added: “The question is how low will prices go, albeit with the caveat that two-thirds of every till receipt is made up of tax through fuel duty at 57.95p a litre and VAT on top. And, as prices head towards the £1 mark, the tax take rises to 75%.”

HMRC oil duty statistics for September show combined sales of petrol and diesel were 3.5% down on August at 3.834bn litres but 1.9% up compared to August 2014. Petrol sales (1.460bn) were 1.1% down on August and diesel (2.374bn) was 5% down on the month before but 2.95% up on the previous August.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.