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Old 05-08-2002, 16:44   #1 (permalink)
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Petrol Prices Colusion - The Culprit

I drive past about 10 service stations each day, on my daily trip to work accross Melbourne.

Each week the charade of so-called "discounting" goes on. There is a very simple explanation.

Shell ALWAYS raises its price from say 83.9 to 94.9 FIRST.

This is a sign for all the others to follow.

Now there may not necessarily be a verbal agreement, but I am sure that Shell is the leader in this silent agreement.

Meanwhile we are told that this is a practice of "Discounting"

What a load of crap. I have stopped buying petrol from Shell since they are clearly the instigator. Now as for gas, I can't believe that price can go up from 29.9 to 45.9 overnight as happend the other week. Also it was funny to see that when the ACCC had their investigation, the servo's held off on their price rises for two weeks....hmmm.
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Old 05-08-2002, 17:35   #2 (permalink)
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Yesterday, on the way home from work, petrol was 82.5

Today, when I filled up, (pay day), it was 92.9

Mongrals!!!

55 litres, that turns out to be an extra $5.50 to fill the tank.

That's a couple of beers!!!
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Old 05-08-2002, 18:19   #3 (permalink)
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A little story on how prices are set at servo's...

=====
Hello, ABC Servo

Hi, Its Mr Smith from (insert petrol supplier name here).

Hi Mr Smith

You need to raise your petrol price up to 95.9 at midday today.

95.9?? but everyone else around here is 90.9

If there are any other changes today I will let you know. Bye

=====


Anyways... at about midday there will be 2 or 3 servo's changing there price. Some will hold out as long as they can trying to get the taxi's change over traffic, and after school traffic.

Some may even hold out till 6pm trying to get the after work traffic... but usually if you havent changed the price within about 4 hours of the specified time, you will get a nasty call from your petrol company.

And then there are the independants... who dont have a specific supplier (buy from the cheapest source), and they will raise there price but still keep it 1 or 2 cents cheaper than the other guys, to make sure they get lots of customers, and make lots of money.
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Old 05-08-2002, 18:46   #4 (permalink)
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For Sydney drivers, here's how petrol stations work!

Tues/Wed, prices are 'reset'. Usually at their highest here - avoid buying petrol on these days!

From Thurs-Sun/Mon, prices gradually drop. Sun/Mon is the best day to buy petrol, but best to check the pricing habits of your local station.

Tues/Wed, price reset again. Of course, there are variances due to oil prices, and the whims of refineries but this is how it usually works when prices are stable.
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Old 05-09-2002, 00:56   #5 (permalink)
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I was talking to a couple of guys who were over in Karratha the other day, they were from Sydney and they didn't know of the arrangements in Perth, so maybe the group doesn't either:

At some point in the afternoon (I think it's 4pm), all petrol stations in the metro area and, I think, major regional areas have to notify the government department of their pricing from m6am the next dat and for the next 24 hours.

The prices are then 'published' on a web page.

At least this way, we know what the price is for the whole day :)

Simon....
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Old 05-09-2002, 03:17   #6 (permalink)
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Just buy it on saturday or sunday.. You will only be 1 or 2 cents off the cheapest price..

I know my servo (shell) is always lowing the price as low as shell will let us (its not a shell owned site). Shell managment won't be renewing our contract at the end of this year. Low price means heaps of customers, means heaps of instore sales which is where my boss makes money, theres nothing in petrol, we are just a suped up newsagent/convience store. People don't even bother checking other sites anymore, they just buy at our servo cause they know we will either be the cheapest in the area or 1 cent off..

Who cares what price it is on Thursday? Buy on Sat/Sun or monday.. Get a credit card, put some money aside.. Buy on sat/sun worse case will be your ~2 cents a litre off. Best case is your ~10+ cents a litre better off.

I only work fri or weekends so Ive never accually had to put the price up. Remember don't yell at the kid behind the counter, we don't run the dam oil industry, complain to shell.. Complain to BP/Caltex or Esso/Mobile.. Complain to the government... Complain to the accc..
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Old 05-09-2002, 03:46   #7 (permalink)
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In dear old Vic you buy from Sunday arvo until Thursday lunch-time - nicely in time for PayDay the prices will rise between 5-12 cents a litre until Sunday afternoon.
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Old 05-09-2002, 04:00   #8 (permalink)
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And stupid me forgot to fill both cars during the week!

/me slaps self with a TroutOfReminderDammit(tm)!!
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Old 05-09-2002, 04:05   #9 (permalink)
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Having once been in the industry and worked for an independant company AND being in charge of the fuel pricing, I can confirm what Kelli says and I might just also add that before the new pricing legislation then there was petrol pricing collusion.

I cant speak for the majors, but some of (not all) the independents would discuss price up days. But generally the only reason why the majors are so quick to put the prices up is because they didnt want to stuff the price up by "hanging low" for too long. Then the competitors would come back down and eveyones chances for operating in the black for the week go out the window.

Yep, seen it many times, and I know how it works.
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