Postage Rates on the Rise Again
WASHINGTON, DC—The United States Postal Service (USPS) is proposing 5.6 percent rate increases, on average, in order to stave off a projected $7 billion loss for 2011, though the increase would only reduce the loss by $2.5 billion at a time when mail volume continues to decline sharply.
The proposed increases would bump the cost of mailing periodicals by 8 percent and catalogs by 5.1 percent, while small parcels would balloon by 23.3 percent. The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) sharply criticized the proposal in light of the 17 percent decrease in mail volume between 2007 and 2009. The DMA pointed out that mail volumes dropped 5 percent following the last rate increase and the association fears an even more dramatic erosion should the new rates be approved.
The Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) has 90 days to review the rate increase request.