Asda slashes petrol prices after CMA review
Asda has slashed petrol prices at the pumps over the past two days, opening up the possibility of a price war with its supermarket rivals.
This follows the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) decision earlier this week to deepen its probe into fuel retailers.
The CMA revealed it had seen some evidence of “rocket and feather” tactics at petrol retailers – when prices shoot up rapidly but come down slowly – this year which had not been evident in previous years, notably with diesel.
Motoring group RAC has since reported that Asda has shaved 4.5p per litre off the cost of unleaded petrol and 5.5p off diesel across its 320 sites nationwide.
Asda is now charging an average of 153.5p for petrol and 176.7p for diesel, which is around 2p per litre less than its rivals.
According to RAC Fuel Watch data, unleaded petrol prices are averaging 157.8p per litre nationwide while diesel prices have climbed to 181.3p per litre.
RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “While we’re pleased one major supermarket retailer has finally started heeding our calls to pass on the enormous drop in the wholesale prices of both fuels, the fact these price cuts have been made so quietly is surely admission that they should have come much sooner.
“We urge the other three supermarkets to catch up quickly – or go even further – and give drivers some much-needed relief from high prices next time they fill up. If they do, this will bring the UK average petrol price down from its current 157.8p which benefit drivers everywhere.”
The drop in petrol prices also reflects a slump in oil markets over recent months, with prices sliding from 14-year highs of $139 per barrel to below $80 per barrel on both major benchmarks amid growing expectations of reduced demand caused by the global economic downturn.