Diesel fuel prices and gas prices are still behaving like they have for the past 10 years. In other words, nothing is stable. When you think something is going to be stable with your fleet fueling costs, it changes like the weather.
Let me explain a little bit to you on the ride we are all on with fueling costs and why more than ever your fuel management program needs to be sharp.
DOE Weekly Average
July 29, 2013 $3.915
July 30, 2012 $3.796
July 25, 2011 $3.949
July 26, 2010 $2.919
Clearly, diesel fuel prices from 2010 to 2011 shot up over a $1.00 a gallon. It was basically a slow continuous ride up the fleet fueling ladder, though diesel did actually hit $4.124 before coming to rest at $3.949 a year later.
2011 to 2012 looks totally flat, like you could have fired your fuel manager if you had one. What really happened was from the end of July 2011 to March 2013: your fuel card burnt a hole in your companies pocket because March 2012, diesel cost you $4.19 a gallon – an increase of over 20 cents per gallon. By July 2012, it went down over 35 cents to $3.796 in just a couple of months.
It was costing you $3.796 at truck stops or maybe more if you weren’t paying true attention to the price in July 2012. Today, basically one year later, it is $3.915 a gallon. If you don’t pay close attention to your fleet fuel cards pricing or don’t care about fuel savings, you missed the fuel price going as high as $4.135 to as low as $3.817.
The fuel market is always going to move around like crazy. This is why it is difficult to be a successful trucking company. Your company needs to focus on its core business and let trusted independent fuel management experts what your diesel fuel purchases.