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: Petrol Prices Have Increased Across Australia Due To Fears Over Potential Russian Invasion Of Ukraine

If you've filled your car up recently, you and your wallet probably noticed a bigger hit than usual. So what has caused the sustained increase in prices?

CommSec figures, sourced from the Australian Institute of Petroleum, show that the national average price for unleaded was a record 176.9 cents a litre last week.

The cause of the price increase is likely due to worries about the potential Russian invasion of Ukraine, which has led to fears about market access to Russia's massive oil production, sending global crude oil prices to seven-year highs.

Although crude oil is still a long way off previous record prices, the Australian dollar is much weaker than it was the last time oil prices were this high.

In September 2014, when oil came close to $US100 a barrel, the Australian dollar was around 90 US cents.

However, the key Brent crude futures price is now $US95.64 a barrel, but the Australian dollar is only worth around 71 US cents.

The increased prices are a cause for concern for households and businesses, with the rise in fuel costs already seeing some price increases on other products.

So will prices decrease?

Reuters markets analyst, John Kemp, stated that all recent oil price declines have coincided with economic ones.

"In recent decades, there has been no instance in which oil prices have spontaneously declined when supply caught up with demand without some form of economic slowdown," he noted.

"If the global economy continues expanding briskly during 2022 and 2023, oil prices and inflation are more likely to continue climbing, rather than dissipate."