20 Jan

Australia’s falling petrol prices: How long will they last?

For the past eight weeks, Australia’s petrol prices (relative to unleaded) have continued to drop thanks to a reduction in the cost of oil.

Last week, they dropped to the lowest average price since May 2009 – almost six years ago. But just how long will this trend last? Average petrol prices of all the major cities have returned the following results:

  • Adelaide: 107 cents/litre
  • Sydney: 107.4 cents/litre
  • Melbourne: 109 cents/litre
  • Brisbane: 113.6 cents/litre
  • Perth: 115.1 cents/litre
  • Canberra: 126.3 cents/litre
  • Hobart: 128.6 cents/litre
  • Darwin: 135.5 cents/litre

The disparity in cost between metro and regional areas sees those living in the country fronting higher costs for their petrol. The average in metro areas currently sits at 111 cents/litre. The average in regional areas currently sits at 125.2 cents/litre.

In terms of diesel, any drops in cost have been comparatively muted. It was only recently that diesel dropped an average 4.3 cents/litre to an overall average of 132.3. However, unlike petrol, the gap in cost between metro and regional for diesel is far smaller – a marginal 2.2 cents/litre.

How long these lowered petrol (and, potentially, diesel) prices will last ultimately does depend on the cost of oil itself. The benchmark US oil prices saw an approximate 5% jump in cost last Friday, but this is fairly marginal and won’t necessarily impact petrol prices themselves. 

Hopefully the lower prices should last at least another month or two, but if/when the price of oil increases and stabilises, we’ll see petrol prices go up. Either way, it’s nice to have some form of reprieve for now. And if projections turn out being right, another 3 or 5 cents/litre will be taken off over the next fortnight – for petrol, at least.

Crediton, Shell petrol station at Station Cross – geograph.org.uk – 201606” by Martin Bodman. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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