Fuel prices: a drop for the first time since the end of December

Last week, on average, a liter of diesel saw its price fall by 16.5 cents, according to official data.

Is it a temporary puff of air, or the beginning of a reflux? Last week, according to data from the Ministry of Ecological Transition, fuel prices fell for the first time since the end of December. The liter of diesel cost, on average, 1.9755 euro, against 2.1407 the previous week, thus returning below the symbolic bar of two euros. A drop of 16.5 cents, after an increase of nearly 40 cents in two weeks.

The liter of SP95 also fell again, reaching 1.9737 euros, or 10 cents less than seven days earlier. That of SP95-E10 lost 9.5 cents, reaching 1.9334 euros, and the SP98 fell to 2.0352 euros. Or 8.5 cents less. On the ground, this evolution is felt in the stations. In the Aisne, while the liter of diesel exceeded 2.3 euros in some stations, it now caps slightly below. In the Alpes-Maritimes, the price reached a maximum of 2.3 euros, whereas it could climb to 2.5 euros the week before.

Since the start of the year, the prices of diesel, SP95 and SP98 have therefore increased by 44, 34 and 33 cents respectively. An evolution explained in particular by the war in Ukraine, which brings the price of oil to high levels. After the start of the Russian invasion, the price of a barrel of Brent jumped on the markets, approaching 130 dollars on March 8. The price at the pump has, logically, followed suit during the raw material. Then, the barrel fell, briefly returning below the 100 dollar mark on March 16, before rising slightly around 110 dollars two days later. In the meantime, the price at the pump should therefore fall, but the high uncertainty makes the market volatile, and prices could therefore start to rise again.

An expected decline

The drop in prices was expected. Last week, “from Thursday, Friday, all of our members have lowered their prices according to their supply“, assured Francis Pousse, the representative of the owner-operators of service stations. Same observation for Michel-Edouard Leclerc, who said he expected a drop of 35 cents on diesel, and 8 to 10 cents on gasoline. The change observed is less significant for diesel.

Faced with the surge in the bill, the government acted, taking targeted measures for the most affected professionals, as well as other, more general, such as the inflation allowance of one hundred euros or the discount of fifteen cents per liter on a full tank of gas. Something to relieve consumers a little. The executive also expects efforts from the side “tankers», in order to contribute to these devices.

Many professions are coping violently with the massive rise in fuel prices. This is particularly the case of taxis, road hauliers, VTC drivers or workers forced to take their car, such as certain health personnel working in rural areas. Snail operations have been launched in certain territories in order to protest against this situation and to obtain more substantial aid. An atmosphere that is reminiscent of the crisis of “yellow vests“: at the time, at the end of October 2018, the liter of diesel was however 44 cents cheaper.

The new normal brought about by the war in Ukraine weighs heavily on the wallets of the French. It remains to be seen whether last week’s decline will become permanent or remain temporary, as the price of oil has seen its price rise again in recent days.

SEE ALSO – Why does the state not freeze taxes?”: faced with rising fuel prices, snail operations in Brittany


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