Lengthy petrol price cycles mean higher prices for Aussies

Longer petrol price cycles across Australia’s largest capital cities have resulted in drivers being exposed to higher prices for longer periods.

An NRMA analysis of 51 price cycles in Sydney since January 2019 found motorists have been exposed to some of the highest gross margin prices for unleaded on record.

Peter Khoury, spokesperson for the NRMA, said the NRMA has been concerned about families and businesses being over-exposed to higher petrol prices, and the inflationary impact this has on the economy is clear. 

“From prices going up at more than twice the rate as they fall, to higher gross margins and prices not falling as far as they should at the bottom of the price cycles in our most populated cities – it is clear motorists are being let down by the chaotic nature of petrol prices.”

The final price cycle in 2023, which covered the Christmas and New Year holiday periods, saw a record average gross margin of 21.5 cents per litre.

In 2023, the daily gross margin exceeded 30 cents per litre on 30 days, while in 2019, it only exceeded the margin on five occasions.

Gross margins at the bottom of the cycle, which is the period when drivers can get access to cheaper fuel, have also spiked. In February 2023, margins at the bottom of the price cycle dropped below the wholesale price to -1.9 cents per litre. The margin reached a record 6.5 cents per litre at the bottom of the most recent completed cycle in Sydney in March.

“The NRMA has gone to great lengths to provide our members and the community with the data and information they need to beat these increasingly unfair prices because we know it’s the only way to save and we will be expanding on this work in the coming months,” said Khoury.

To stay up to date on the latest industry headlines, sign up to the C&I e-newsletter.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top