Petrol prices: National average at four-month high, Sydney most expensive

The national average price of unleaded petrol has hit a four-month high, and Sydney was the most expensive capital city to fill up in last week, according to a report from financial firm CommSec.

Citing figures from the Australian Institute of Petroleum, CommSec found the national average of unleaded petrol rose 0.7 cents per litre to a four-month high of 119.1 cents per litre for the week to May 29, while wholesale prices at 113.0 cents a litre, jumping 1.8 cents a litre over the week.

As typical gross retail margins are between 8 to 10 cents a litre, CommSec cautioned petrol prices would cost motorists around 122 cents a litre.

"While at four-month highs, and up from lows in late February and early April, petrol is still around 18 cents a litre cheaper than a year ago," wrote CommSec chief economist Craig James in a note.

"Sydney was the most expensive capital city to fill up with petrol last week, despite having a lower wholesale price than either Hobart or Darwin - that situation has changed in the last few days following the end of the discounting cycle in Adelaide."

The national average price of diesel rose by 1.8 cents to 117.3 cents per litre.

Oil prices edged higher early on Monday as peak demand in the US summer driving season kicks off at the same time crude production has fallen to its lowest level since September 2014, according to Reuters.

US West Texas Intermediate crude futures was trading at $US49.16 per barrel.

"The lift in petrol prices has potential to crimp some discretionary spending and make consumers a little less confident about their finances," Mr James wrote.

CommSec is anticipating the petrol price will add to the inflation rate in the June quarter, after it detracted from the figures in the March quarter.

Source: ABC News

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