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Major retailers slammed for failing to reduce petrol prices in line with falling wholesale costs

MAJOR retailers are failing to reduce petrol prices in line with falling wholesale costs, the RAC warned today.

The roadside recovery firm said the wholesale cost of unleaded — the price when it arrives at forecourts — is now back down to its early May price of 131.75p per litre, which saw average pump prices of around 167p per litre.

But drivers are currently paying an average of 183p per litre at pumps across Britain despite the drop in wholesale costs, the RAC said.

It comes after fuel prices hit their highest-ever levels earlier this summer as the Britain’s cost-of-living crisis began to bite.

The wholesale cost of petrol has fallen by 20p since early June, according to the RAC.

Yet Britain’s retailers continued to increase their prices in June and only dropped their pump prices by an average of 9p during July, the organisation said.

This means drivers filling up at the end of July could be paying almost £9 a tank more than they should be.

Equally, the RAC said drivers should now be paying about 182p per litre for diesel — nearly £6 a tank less than the end of July average of 192p per litre.

The RAC said that, while several reduced their prices last week, the cuts are not enough to be in line with the wholesale cost.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “What ought to have happened is that the biggest retailers cut their prices more significantly on a daily basis, given the wholesale price of petrol has fallen steadily over the last eight weeks.”

Mr Williams advised drivers that they should no longer assume supermarkets are the cheapest places to get fuel.

AA president Edmund King also criticised major retailers for failing to drop prices, branding it “unforgivable” and “is forcing struggling drivers to play the pump-price postcode lottery."

He said: “Drivers have been taken for an expensive ride during the cost-of-living crisis at a time they can least afford it.”

Labour shadow transport secretary Louise Haigh said: “The Conservative government is too busy tearing itself apart to tackle the shameless profiteering of petrol giants, hitting working people hard.

“It is a scandal that firms making multibillion pound profits refuse to pass on falling costs to hard-pressed motorists. 

“They are being taken for a ride, while this hapless government refuses to lift a finger.”

The government has been approached for comment.

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