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Why are petrol prices still so high?


And just how much are you really saving?

Petrol prices fell in April after changes to excise rules – but have motorists really noticed any difference?

The latest petrol pricing report from the consumer regulator highlights that prices dropped after the Federal Budget temporarily halved the fuel excise.

Here's how much the price fell in each capital city, according to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission:

CityAverage price drop
Sydney39 cents/litre
Melbourne39 cents/litre
Brisbane39 cents/litre
Perth39 cents/litre
Adelaide39 cents/litre
Canberra25-48 cents/litre
Hobart25-48 cents/litre
Darwin25-48 cents/litre

Cutting the excise reduces the price per litre by around 24 cents.

The bad news is that this drop doesn't mean consistently lower prices, now or in the future.

"Retail petrol prices will still fluctuate with changes in international prices and the price cycles in the largest capital cities, even though the excise cut has flowed through to the bowser," ACCC chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said.

With prices soaring to a 14-year high in March this year, our stress levels over paying for petrol went through the roof as well.

Unfortunately, the excise cut, which aimed to ease that problem, is only temporary.

It ends in October, so you can expect to be paying another 24 cents per litre then, even before market variations come into play.

"Our domestic retail petrol prices largely follow the international benchmark price because most of the fuel we use in Australia is imported," Cass-Gottlieb said.

Freaking out over fuel costs? Here are 5 ways to beat high petrol prices.

Angus Kidman's Findings column looks at new developments and research that help you save money, make wise decisions and enjoy your life more.

Picture: Getty Images/ACCC

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