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Petrol and diesel costs rise for third month with motorists hit with ‘unfair’ fees


Petrol and diesel owners are battling even higher motoring costs with fuel prices up for the third successive month.

Petrol costs rose by almost 2p per litre in March with average charges up from 144.62p to 146.48p at forecourts, according to data from RAC Fuel Watch.

The jump now means average petrol prices have jumped almost 6p since the start of the year with rises back in January and February.

Diesel fees are up by more than a penny with average costs rising from 154.68p to 155.99p.

It means diesel rates have also risen for three consecutive months in a major blow for those struggling to keep their cars on the road.

According to experts, topping up a full 55-litre tank of petrol will now cost around £80.56 with diesel averaging at £85.79.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams blamed the increase on the rising cost of oil barrels.

He explained: “The rising cost of oil, combined with the pound still only being worth a meagre $1.3, has led to another month of misery at the pumps with the price of petrol going up 2p a litre.

“Sadly, this means the average price of petrol has gone up nearly 6p so far this year.”

He added: “Worryingly, there is sometimes as much as 30p between their high and low prices. We badly need to see an end to this practice as this postcode lottery is extremely unfair on drivers.

“On a more positive note, it’s good to see the average retailer margin on petrol come down from 10.5p a litre at the start of March to under 8p.

“While the cause is most likely to be the increase in the wholesale price of petrol, it could also be due to the CMA again raising concerns about higher retailer margins very publicly just last week.”

The RAC also revealed there has been a surge in demand for petrol in the United States ahead of the summer.

This has caused the wholesale prices of unleaded fuel to rise, matching diesel costs.

It leaves unleaded costs on the wholesale market around 113.3p, just a penny down on diesel at 114.69p.

The RAC has warned this could see the gap between the two fuels at the pumps could close even more in the coming weeks.

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