New Delhi: As the international benchmark Brent crude oil has gained about 20% since hitting an 18-month low in late December, the prices of petrol and diesel have begun to rise once again. Since the beginning of this year, the rates of both the two automobile fuels have jumped by around 1.5 per litre. Today, prices rose by 38 paise and 49 paise, respectively.

A litre of petrol now costs 70.13 in Delhi, 75.77 in Mumbai, 72.44 in Bangalore, 72.79 in Chennai and 72.24 in Kolkata. Diesel is priced at 64.18 a litre in Delhi, 67.18 in Mumbai, 66.29 in Bangalore, 67.78 in Chennai and 65.95 in Kolkata.

Following a decline in rates on almost all days since October 18, fuel prices had cooled to a year’s low of 68.29 for petrol and 62.16 in case of diesel.

Petrol price had touched a record high of 84 per litre in Delhi and 91.34 in Mumbai on October 4. Diesel on that day had peaked at 75.45 a litre in Delhi and 80.10 in Mumbai.

In the international market, US crude prices finished the last week up 7.6%, their best showing in six months. Since late December, Brent crude oil has gained more than 20%. On Christmas Eve, Brent was touching the rate of $50 a barrel while now it is hovering around $60.

If October price levels are taken into account, crude oil is still down by 25%.

Making crude oil imports costlier, the rupee has also slid about 1% against US dollar this year.

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