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Petrol, diesel prices remain unchanged after rising for two days; fuel rates likely to fall as crude declines

FP Staff

After rising for two consecutive days, petrol and diesel prices remained unchanged on Wednesday across the country amid reports of likely dip in fuel prices in the coming days as a result of declining crude oil prices in the international market.

There was no change in petrol and diesel prices on Wednesday from Tuesday's rates in all major cities across the country.

In Delhi, petrol was retailing at Rs 74.61 per litre on Tuesday, Mumbai Rs 80.21, Chennai Rs 77.50 and Kolkata Rs 77.23 per litre, according to data available on Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) website. Diesel was selling in Delhi at Rs 67.49 a litre, Mumbai Rs 70.76, Chennai Rs 71.30 and Kolkata Rs 69.85 per litre.

Petrol and diesel prices are expected to fall in the coming days by at least Rs 1.50 per litre from the current rates as a result of fall in crude oil price, which is now below the level that existed even before the drone attacks on Saudi oil facilities, reported Financial Express.

"The current fall in the Brent crude oil price is likely to bring the petrol price down by around Rs 1.5 in another 15-18 days" Ajay Bansal, president of All India Petroleum Dealers Association was quoted as saying in the report.

The drone attacks on Saudi Aramco's oil facilities on 14 September triggered the shooting up of crude oil prices in the global market as the attacks affected about 5 percent of the output. Subsequently, it reflected on petrol and diesel prices domestically, which rose by Rs 2.58 and Rs 2.06 respectively since 15 September.

Meanwhile, crude oil rebounded from several days of falling prices after industry data showed a surprise drop in US crude inventories, offsetting weak economic readings in the United States that have depressed global stock markets, reported Reuters.

Brent crude rose 43 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $59.32 a barrel, claiming back some of the ground lost over the past three sessions. US West Texas Intermediate crude was at $54.23 a barrel, up 61 cents or 1.1 percent.

Front-month WTI prices settled down for a sixth straight session on Tuesday, their longest losing streak this year, after US manufacturing activity dived to a 10-year low as US-China trade tensions weighed on exports.

"Brent and WTI have erased those (Tuesday) losses in early trade respectively," Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at OANDA in Singapore said, although the trading volume was low because of regional holidays.

"We would expect the rallies to quickly run out of steam as we approach $61.00 and $55.00 a barrel," he added.

Oil pared some losses in post-settlement trade on Tuesday after American Petroleum Institute (API) data showed US crude stocks fell last week by 5.9 million barrels, against expectations for an increase of 1.6 million barrels.

The Energy Information Administration's weekly oil inventories report is due at 10:30 am on Wednesday.

Oil prices are now below levels from before the 14 September attacks on Saudi oil facilities as the world's largest oil exporter has restored its full oil production and capacity.

€" With inputs from agencies

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