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Petrol rise in pay week no surprise

By Kerces - 24 May 2005 14

Well I’m certain there are Rioters out there who’ll be able to tell me if last Thursday was public service pay day. I’m pretty sure it was because the petrol prices went up.

I drive past the Gull station in Belconnen on my way to pretty much anywhere and, having recently found myself the (not)owner of a car, I have begun to take an interest in petrol prices. And they are interesting.

Every other Wednesday the price of unleaded mysteriously jumps anywhere from 7c to 10c between when I go to uni in the morning and when I go to dancing in the evening. And then during the next fortnight I watch as it slowly goes back to the (now) regular price somewhere a bit more than 100c.

Now I know the motto goes that if you have to choose between a conspiracy and a stuff up, go for a stuff up, but I don’t think this is one.
Anyone else noticed a similar phenomenon at other petrol stations around the place?


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14 Responses to
Petrol rise in pay week no surprise
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Special G 7:39 am 26 May 05

I just went over to New Zealand and standard petrol price while we were there was $1.29 per litre – unleaded. NZ dollars although the exchange rate is not that much different.

I don’t know what it is now although 13 years ago when living in Germany petrol prices were 1.20DM per litre (about $1.1 AUD at the time).

We are not doing too badly.


em 2:56 pm 25 May 05

ACCC has some interesting info on petrol price cycles. Check here:

Vic Bitterman 8:38 pm 24 May 05

Filled up last Wednesday at $1.047 – several in Tuggeranong at that price. Surprise, PS payday comes around and the same servos go up to $1.129. Friday comes around, they’re back to $1.047.

Good business model – inflate your prices when demand is at it’s highest.

johnboy 8:30 pm 24 May 05

OpenYourMind – I’m comparing prices with last week.

Year on year doesn’t have much influence on the bowser.

Kerces 3:47 pm 24 May 05

Jamius maximus:
I normally fill up on a wednesday on account of that’s when I have money and coincidentally also when I run out of petrol. As long as you do it in the morning, this seems to be a reasonable time.

OpenYourMind 12:34 pm 24 May 05

I have an avid interest in oil prices and have commented on the impending world oil peak before. JB states that the oil price is ‘plunging’. This is incorrect. In fact it jumped up $1.50 odd yesterday to $48.68. That was an unthinkable price a few years ago. I watch the oil price and the petrol price and there is a very strong relationship between the two. Usually if oil drops, petrol drops soon after.

The prediction is that our next summer will see unthinkable oil prices – particularly if the Northern Hemisphere winter is a cold one. We are close to the point of world demand strongly exceeding world supply.

jamius maximus 11:42 am 24 May 05

So what are the best days the fill up (assuming we have some kind of control over weh we do)?

Perhaps the Monday/Tuesday before PS pay day?

Saru 10:40 am 24 May 05

Funny how the price of petrol fluctuates with the international price of the raw material(s) but the price of bread or milk stays the same.

Meh. It’s still cheaper per litre than orange juice.

Ralph 10:13 am 24 May 05

I’m gladdened to hear such ignorance will always keep me (economist) in a job.

Bodhichitta 10:10 am 24 May 05

Yeah, prices always go up on near PS paydays and also on long weekends. Consumer Pricing Commission thingy people have checked into it a few times and they dont believe that the price is being put up becuase of PS paydays…they believe that its just normal price fluctuations (yeah right).

Ari 9:55 am 24 May 05

I was filling up on that Thursday and a motorist at the neighbouring pump (from Victoria) asked if the price in Canberra had leapt recently because he was surprised at the cost.

He said the prices in Melbourne that day were 10c/litre cheaper.

Thumper 9:17 am 24 May 05

I don’t even look at the prices these days. It seems that, when world oil prices go per barrell, the servos are jsut as quick to raise their prices. However, when the price of crude drops, they seem to be a little lax in returning the price.

However, Kerces comment about it going up before payday does appear to be a fact. And this has nothing to do with the price of crude.

If I remember I may start taking note of prices at my local Shell over a period of a month of so and see what happens.


Ralph 8:59 am 24 May 05

The price fluctuates with demand. People fill up on pay day and close to the weekend. Similarly when people return to work the next week.

It takes a couple of weeks for the effect of world oil price changes to flow through. Also note the dollar has been softer the past couple of weeks.

johnboy 8:13 am 24 May 05

And yet the global price is plunging.

Interestingly drug prices have not (i’m told) been spiking with all the recent seizures.

So the drug industry is at least more competitive and probably more ethical than the oil cartels…

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