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Relief for drivers as fuel prices fall; Asda leads way with 2p a litre cut.

Byline: MARTIN SHAW News Reporter martin.shaw@examiner.co.uk

FUEL prices are set to fall from today after a drop in the wholesale oil market.

Supermarket giant Asda announced it will lead the way with a 2p a litre cut for both unleaded and diesel.

The Leeds-based chain, which has a major store in Bradford Road, Huddersfield, said drivers will pay no more than 131.7p per litre for unleaded and 137.7 for diesel.

Asda has led the way with two price cuts over the past fortnight, helping ease the pressure on family budgets in the countdown to Christmas.

Other petrol retailers - even small independents - are likely to follow with prices set to come down across the board.

Bernard Stern, site manager for Paddock-based C J Stern (Oils) Ltd, said Asda's move was no surprise.

"There has been a wholesale price fall in the marketplace and so I expected prices to drop a couple of pence in the next week or so," he said.

"I expect we will be reducing prices too when we have our next delivery."

Mr Stern said at many stores Asda had unmanned petrol stations where drivers paid by card only.

"That gives them less overheads so they can shave the price of fuel," he added.

Mr Stern said the latest 2p price cut was "not particularly aggressive" and added: "Not even the supermarkets can afford to sell fuel at less than cost.

"We have been aware that the margin has been there for a price cut for a few days."

Mr Stern said he had always been puzzled by Asda's pricing policy.

"Asda always use .7 on their prices while everyone else uses .9.

"The .9 is just a psychological thing.

People just register the first three digits so the price appears lower."

Andy Peake, Asda's petrol trading director, said the chain was again leading the way and added: "Unlike other retailers our price cuts benefit everyone across the country, meaning that no-one filling up at Asda will be forced to play a postcode lottery."

Since 2008, Asda's Income Tracker has shown the huge impact high fuel prices have had on the average family's monthly budget.

The cost of filling up the family car remains a key factor in the amount of money families have to play with, with fuel 2.8% higher in September than the previous year, putting further pressure on family spending power.

A 3p rise in fuel duty, due in August, was postponed until January next year.

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SIGNS OF THE TIMES: Petrol prices displayed on forecourts around Huddersfield yesterday
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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Nov 8, 2012
Words:432
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