Lexington Institute Postal Trendwatch — April 2014

Postal Trendwatch — April 2014

Executive Summary

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) lost $354 million in Q1 FY 2014 — the 19th money-losing quarter of the prior 21. Still, the loss represents a significant improvement over the $1.3-billion loss posted in the same period last year.

The Service’s operating revenue grew $334 million, or 1.9 percent, relative to Q1 FY 2013, driven by growth in Shipping and Package services revenue and operational cost cuts totaling $574 million.

But this revenue growth was not enough to offset losses from declining First-Class Mail volume.

First-Class Mail consumers continue to pay a disproportionate share of institutional costs, contributing significantly to overhead in 2013 despite declining service quality. Stamp prices increased by 6 percent in January 2014, while prices for competitive products rose by 2.4 percent.

Articles in this Trendwatch include:

  • Monopoly Consumers Face Higher Rate Increases than Competitive Products Consumers
  • First-Class Consumers Contributing Heavily to Institutional Overhead
  • Monopoly Service Quality Declines
  • Postal Service Pilots New Competitive Package Services
  • New Investments on Technology Upgrades

To view the rest of The Lexington Institute’s Postal Trendwatch, please download the PDF.