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Record oil prices - petrol to hit 1.50?

  • Price of crude oil hits record high
  • Petrol could hit 1.50 per litre by September
  • Recession, demand and supply to blame
Words By Jim Holder

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Petrol prices could hit 1.50 a litre by September, after oil prices hit record highs for three days in a row.

The price of a barrel of oil nudged over the $115 (58) mark for the first time ever.

This means that the price of petrol in the UK is set to rise even further, despite having already increased by 20% in some places since the start of the year.

Even an expected drop in the demand for energy is not slowing the price increase.

Economist Jan Stuart of UBSS told the Guardian: 'The summer driving season is approaching, and even in a recessionary economy, seasonal gasoline demand will pick up, which adds to stress on the global oil supply chain'.

Supply interruptions in Nigeria and North America are also partially to blame for the increase in prices, as well as comments by one of Russia's largest oil producers that output there may have peaked.

However, the prospect of 1.50 a litre has been dismissed by Ray Holloway of the Petrol Retailers Association.

He said: 'It's extremely doubtful we'll see prices hit 1.50, but motorists will pay slightly more per litre until mid-year, when the increase will drop away'.

The combination of petrol prices and revised road tax costs for next year could, however, 'catapult sales of fuel-efficient cars', according to spokesperson for the Environmental Transport Association.