Forecourt Trader - 30 years at the heart of the fuel retailing community
Retail » Money talk

Money Talk: Are you brave enough to try our end-of-year quiz?

1] Your accounts show total shop turnover for the year as £240,000 at an overall GP% of 19%. But your business plan was based on an expected GP of 23% on sales of £220,000. How far off-target is your gross profit against the business plan?

Money Talk: Average forecourt pay rates rise by 1.3%

As we've been doing every year since 1998, we've once again taken the payroll data that PAYEPeople processes on behalf of hundreds of forecourt operators across the UK to find the real pay rates that were being paid to nearly 6,000 individual hourly-paid employees, giving a true snapshot of what's being paid.]

Money Talk: Trust a professional or a family amateur?

There's a scenario which crops up quite often when we're talking with people new to running their own business. We'll be trying to explain something quite well established say, for example, the basic rules covering the treatment of travel expenses in their personal tax returns.

Money Talk: Counting the cost of handling all that cash

It was interesting to read the feature in July's edition of FT 'Change on the Cards', which highlighted the growing frustration of many dealers with fuel cards. As we've pointed out on these pages previously, the real problem with the terms under which most retailers work with those cards is not so much the margin although that could always be better but the adverse impact that the payment terms have on the retailer's cash flow. Unfortunately fuel cards do now represent a very significant chunk of core volume for many dealer sites (and that really means fuel volume historically fuel cards have generated negligible non-fuel sales). These are customers who still come to fill up even if your pole price is 3 or 4ppl more than the nearest supermarket, so it's very difficult to see how anything will change. The tail now wags the dog.

Money Talk: The modern forecourt - is it partially exempt?

Every now and again an issue crops up that highlights the changing nature of petrol retailing. Occasionally it surfaces as a small, apparently isolated query which then seems to spread at a rather unexpected rate. Suddenly we have to look at more than just one or two retailers to check whether there may be implications for others. The subject of VAT partial exemption is one such issue and it may affect you.

Money Talk: Accountants don't bite (unless provoked)

While many people are off enjoying their summer holidays, July and August see many accounting professionals wishing that they could extend theirs indefinitely rather than going back to the office and trying to sort out the latest 'jumble in a shoe box' that some of their clients hand to them as part of their year-end records.

Money Talk: How to avoid the Take That approach to tax

It happens with almost monotonous regularity another very wealthy celebrity 'outed' as owing the taxman several million pounds because some exotic 'tax-saving' scheme for which they'd signed up has been declared illegal.

Money Talk: Been here long? If you're a newcomer... read on

Sometimes it's easy to forget that at any given time, there are always a few people who are new to this industry in fact, new to being in their own business at all. Of course, there's some 'churn' in petrol retailing, as in every other walk of life.

Money Talk: Budget measures slip in through the back door

Any readers below the age of say 40 might be amazed to hear that until not so many years ago, 'Budget Day' was one of the most eagerly anticipated and busiest days in the petrol retailers' calendar. It was typically preceded by weeks of speculation about how much extra fuel and tobacco to order, on the assumption that both were sure to rise by quite a considerable amount at 6pm or midnight on the day. There would be queues of cars forming on forecourts during the afternoon, and a complete crush at home time as punters took every opportunity to fill up before the dreaded price increases came into effect.

Money Talk: Auto Enrolment is on its way to your business

You may have heard of it already, but if you haven't, we're talking about pensions. And it will affect you and every other employer in the country. You need to know about the regulations and make sure that you're ready, since the penalties for failing to do so are quite eye-watering. The scheme started for the largest employers at the end of 2012, but one way or another, it will come to you between now and 2018. That may sound like a long time, but the more staff you employ, the sooner it will be.

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Weekly retail fuel prices: 20 January 2020
RegionDieselLPGSuper ULUL
East133.4167.40141.10128.52
East Midlands132.93141.67128.44
London133.0565.90142.23128.80
North East131.55139.57126.67
North West132.1066.90140.54127.58
Northern Ireland129.82134.61125.46
Scotland132.65139.08127.50
South East133.80141.93129.03
South West132.9567.90139.13128.12
Wales132.1064.90137.03127.13
West Midlands132.7866.57142.07128.26
Yorkshire & Humber131.9963.90141.14127.34

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As Brexit day finally arrives at the end of January, are you expecting any negative impact on your forecourt business through leaving the EU?

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