Postal Service Loses Nearly $2 Billion in Second Quarter

U.S. Postal Service letter carrier of 12 years, Jamesa Euler, turns down the flag on a mailbox while delivering mail in Atlanta. U.S. Postal Service letter carrier of 12 years, Jamesa Euler, turns down the flag on a mailbox while delivering mail in Atlanta. David Goldman/AP

The U.S. Postal Service lost an average of more than $21 million per day in the second quarter of fiscal 2013, with a total loss of $1.9 billion.

The loss was actually a 40 percent improvement over the same period last year, when USPS lost $3.2 billion. To date this fiscal year, the Postal Service has lost $3.1 billion, less than half of what it lost through the first half of 2012.

Excluding separation incentives, USPS actually broke even in operational costs in the latest quarter, which ended March 31. Prefunding for retirees’ health benefits and workers’ compensation accounted for most of the losses, according to the Postal Service.

While revenue from first-class mail -- USPS’ biggest money-maker -- declined 2.7 percent from last year, standard mail and shipping and package revenue were up 2.4 percent and 9.3 percent, respectively.

The Postal Service has made a concerted effort to grow its shipping business -- including exempting packages from its plan to end Saturday delivery -- and attributed the boost to “the growth of e-commerce and successful marketing campaigns.”

At a Board of Governors meeting Friday, Postal Service officials renewed calls for comprehensive reform legislation from Congress, though they were careful not to appear overly optimistic any such bill was forthcoming.

“The most important issue relates to time,” Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said, “and we’re running out of it.”

Absent legislation, the Postal Service will be forced to resort to “extreme actions,” Donahoe said, such as increasing prices.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.