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This is how it continues after the end of the tank discount

Drivers are seeing unusual things at their gas station these days.

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This is how it continues after the end of the tank discount

Drivers are seeing unusual things at their gas station these days. At an Aral station in downtown Hamburg, the price tag on the large sign for premium petrol E10 has been crossed out with black tape. A few streets away, a Shell station has disconnected two gas pumps with a corresponding sign. The petrol stations control their stocks immediately before the end of the tank discount.

The gas station chains only have a few days left to sell the fuel subsidized by the state. A total of 34 cents is the tax rebate for petrol and 17 cents for diesel. This government fuel discount ends at midnight on the turn of the month. The petrol station operators have to pay the changed prices when purchasing from their wholesalers and at the refineries.

It was the same with the introduction of the tank discount. In theory, the petrol station chains were able to pass on the fuel purchased with the tax rebate directly to the motorists at these conditions - but things turned out differently. The tank discount could hardly be read on the price boards in the first few days. The oil companies justified the high prices once with a more expensive wholesale purchase price and once with increased crude oil prices. It was not until mid-June that the majority of the tax break actually reached customers.

Exactly this could now happen again – in the opposite direction, so to speak. Petrol stations that fill up their own tanks right at the beginning of September will immediately apply the old tax rate and charge prices in excess of two euros per liter of petrol or diesel.

However, leaseholders who still have old remainders could offer them at the old tax rate and thus significantly cheaper. If the gas station lessee does not do this and applies the new tax rate to the “old” product, the profit margin for this amount of petrol and diesel will be considerably higher.

According to the industry association En2x, the former mineral oil industry association, there is no law against such business practices. The charges at the petrol stations are monitored by customs, for example. For motorists, all of this means that you should fill up your tank in August if possible and take advantage of the tax rebate while you can.

The many months without sufficient rain show clear signs. The level of the Rhine continues to fall. With serious consequences for refueling. At the moment, petrol is significantly more expensive in the south than in the north.

Source: WELT/ Max Seib

Market experts expect that petrol station prices will not be raised everywhere in Germany and immediately at the beginning of September. “I assume that the prices will not go up directly by the full amount of the tank discount. The tax rebate should continue to have an effect for a period of one to two weeks,” said Daniel Grübner, Managing Partner of Europe Oil Telegram. The decisive factor is how much petrol and diesel the gas station has stashed away and how quickly they can sell the stock.

A medium-sized gas station has tanks for around 100,000 liters. Five to ten million liters a year are sold, a range of a successful petrol station. A large station is usually supplied once or twice a week. Small suppliers can also manage with two petrol and diesel deliveries per month.

The industry association En2x does not comment on the forthcoming price developments. "From September 1st, the gas station operators will have to pay the regular energy tax to the state again when purchasing fuel," said Managing Director Adrian Willig at a conference call. It is not possible to forecast the price levels in September. "However, I don't expect there to be much discounted petrol or discounted diesel left in stock by early September," the chief lobbyist said.

The manager justifies the gas station prices, which have been rising again in the past few days, with the current high demand and increased costs, for example for transport. "Transport prices have increased fivefold and in some cases even tenfold," said Willig. The triggers for this are the capacity problems in inland shipping due to the low water on the Rhine and in rail freight transport. Diesel is more affected by the price jumps than petrol.

The reason given is the unexpectedly high demand from the electricity industry, which is switching parts of the electricity generation from gas to oil products. This additional demand is estimated at between two and five million tons of heating oil. Heating oil and diesel are related products in the refinery.

The automobile club ADAC has been complaining for weeks that refueling in Germany is too expensive. Measured by the ratio of gas station prices to the price of crude oil and the exchange rate of the euro to the dollar, the fuel prices are up to 20 cents per liter too high.

However, the market experts do not expect a shortage in the supply of petrol and diesel. There is sufficient capacity for both crude oil and refineries in Europe. "It will depend on whether the quantities of diesel or petrol arrive in time where they are needed," said Grübner.

Logistics will decide whether there will be regional vacancies. This is already visible in southern Germany. Here the gas station prices are sometimes more than ten cents above the price level in northern Germany. Southwest Germany is heavily dependent on the transport route on the Rhine for the supply of oil products.

"Everything on shares" is the daily stock exchange shot from the WELT business editorial team. Every morning from 7 a.m. with our financial journalists. For stock market experts and beginners. Subscribe to the podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcast, Amazon Music and Deezer. Or directly via RSS feed.

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