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North East fuel prices rise for third consecutive month

Wearsiders may feel the pinch at the pumps less than anywhere else in the UK, as the national average fuel price increased for the third month in a row.

Regional averages show the North East petrol prices have gone up 1.09p from the 2nd of January until the 31st, where as in Scotland the increase has been 1.76p in the same period.

Diesel in the North East has gone from 122.82p to 124.39 during the same time, the South East was the most expensive for both fuels at the beginning of the month.

Filling a 55-litre family car with petrol now costs £67.23 whereas the diesel equivalent is more expensive at £68.77. This is in stark contrast to the cheapest point of 2017 in July when a tank of unleaded was £4.35 cheaper and a diesel fill-up was £5.51 cheaper.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said:

“The start of 2018 hasn’t been good for motorists as they’ve had to endure their third consecutive monthly increase at the pumps. Both petrol and diesel are now at their highest points for more than three years which is bound to be making a dent in household budgets.”

"There is a glimmer of hope that some of the heat in the forecourt price of fuel could cool in February as our current two-week forecast shows reductions of a penny for petrol and two pence for diesel.

“Whether this will filter through at the pumps is questionable as retailers are generally loath to pass on wholesale savings when they consider them to be marginal.

“While the fuel market is very hard to predict at the best of times there is currently even greater uncertainty as the price of oil went through the $70 a barrel mark in January for the first time in more than three years while sterling has strengthened against the dollar making wholesale fuel cheaper as it’s traded in dollars.

“We urge fuel retailers to be fair to motorists and pass on the current savings in the wholesale price of petrol and diesel at the pump. Reflecting downward movement in wholesale prices on the forecourt, however small, is important for retailers as motorists generally believe there is little transparency in the price of fuel, unless of course costs are on the up when they understand all too well they will quickly be paying more to fill up.”