Petrol price cycles

Petrol prices move up and down in regular patterns or cycles. The cheapest and most expensive days to buy petrol can change from cycle to cycle. Use price cycles to help you decide when to buy petrol.

Petrol price cycles in capital cities

Sydney Melbourne Brisbane Adelaide Perth

A petrol price cycle is a movement in retail price from a low point (or trough) to a high point (or peak) to a subsequent low point. In these cycles, prices steadily go down for a period followed by a sharp increase.

Price cycles are the result of deliberate pricing policies of petrol retailers, and are not directly related to changes in wholesale costs.

The duration of petrol price cycles in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide varies from cycle to cycle, and has increased in recent years. In 2015 to date, price cycle durations in these cities have ranged from a low of 13 days to a high of 67 days. The petrol price cycle duration in Perth is generally seven days.

Disclaimer

Historical data can only give an indication of the cheapest and most expensive days to buy petrol in the future, so consumers should use this information as a general guide only.

The charts are updated daily from Monday to Friday at around midday, and show average daily prices for the last 45 days. Updates on Mondays include prices for the preceding Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Buying tips are usually updated around midday on Monday, Wednesday and Friday

The buying tips may not always seem apparent from the charts. This is because the charts show historical prices.

The charts show average daily regular unleaded petrol for all cities except Sydney, which shows E10 prices.

Petrol prices in Sydney

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • Prices appear to be around the highest point of the price cycle.
  • If possible, motorists should avoid buying petrol at this time.

The chart below shows daily average E10 petrol prices in Sydney over the past 45 days.

Daily average E10 petrol prices in Sydney over the past 45 days
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Sydney is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle

Tue 16 Jun 15

3

Fri 19 Jun 15

10

13

Mon 29 Jun 15

4

Fri 03 Jul 15

10

14

Mon 13 Jul 15

 

4

 

Fri 17 Jul 15

 

10

 

14

 

Mon 27 Jul 15

6

Sun 02 Aug 15

10

16

Wed 12 Aug 15

4

Sun 16 Aug 15

9

13

Petrol prices in Melbourne

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • Prices appear to be around the lowest point of the price cycle.
  • Now is a good time for motorists to buy petrol.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Melbourne over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Melbourne over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Melbourne is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle

Thu 19 Mar 15

5

Tue 24 Mar 15

28

33

Tue 21 Apr 15

5

Sun 26 Apr 15

15 20
Mon 11 May 15 5 Sat 16 May 15 18 23
Wed 03 Jun 15 5 Mon 08 Jun 15 17 22
Fri 24 Jul 15 4 Tue 28 Jul 15 29 33

Petrol prices in Brisbane

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • Prices are decreasing but they are likely to decrease further.
  • If possible, motorists should delay buying petrol until later.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Brisbane over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Brisbane over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Brisbane is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle

Sun 10 May 15

7

Sun 17 May 15

15

22

Mon 01 Jun 15

4

Fri 05 Jun 15

16

20

Sun 21 Jun 15

5

Fri 26 Jun 15

17

22

Mon 13 Jul 15

5

Sat 18 Jul 15

16

21

Mon 03 Aug 15

4

Fri 07 Aug 15

10

14

Petrol prices in Adelaide

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • Prices appear to be around the lowest point of the price cycle.
  • Now is a good time for motorists to buy petrol.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Adelaide over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Adelaide over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Adelaide is shown below:

First day of the cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle

Mon 25 May 15

3

Thu 28 May 15

13

16

Wed 10 Jun 15

3

Sat 13 Jun 15

12

15

Thu 25 Jun 15

3

Sun 28 Jun 15

15

18

Mon 13 Jul 15 4 Fri 17 Jul 15 11 15

Tue 28 Jul 15

3

Fri 31 Jul 15

15

18

Petrol prices in Perth

Buying tip

Historically Perth has had regular weekly petrol price cycles, with prices peaking on Thursday and then decreasing to a low on Wednesday.

However, in May 2015 the pattern of the Perth petrol price cycle changed, and since the end of June 2015 prices generally reach a peak

First day of the cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle
Mon 20 Jul 15 1 Tue 21 Jul 15 6 7
Mon 27 Jul 15 1 Tue 28 Jul 15 6 7
Mon 03 Aug 15 1 Tue 04 Aug 15 6 7

Mon 10 Aug 15

1

Tue 11 Aug 15

6

7

Mon 17 Aug 15 1 Tue 18 Aug 15 6 7

on Tuesday, before decreasing to a low on Monday.

The chart below shows average daily regular unleaded petrol prices in Perth over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Perth over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Perth is shown below:

 

If you have information that a fuel retailer is not competing fairly

Contact the ACCC

More information

Petrol, diesel and LPG
Monitoring of the Australian petroleum industry - reports

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