Postal Service sees $764M July loss

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The US Postal Service saw a net loss of $764 million in July, bringing its 10-month fiscal year-to-date net loss to more than $6.1 billion. The organization ran a net loss of $865 million in July 2009, according to preliminary numbers filed with the Postal Regulatory Commission.

Mail volume was up 0.9% year over year to 13.8 billion pieces. Of that, 13.7 billion pieces were handled by the USPS' mailing services unit. However, for its fiscal year to date, the USPS saw a 4.3% decrease in mail volume to 142.7 billion pieces. The USPS also saw a net operating loss of $753 million for July. The unaudited numbers were provided by the Postal Regulatory Commission.

In July, the Postal Service also cut total work hours by 5% year over year to 97 million work hours. For FY 2010 to date, it has cut work hours by 6.5% to 989 million work hours.

Earlier this month, the USPS reported a net loss of $2.5 billion for June, a significant increase from the $1.3 billion reported in June 2009. Joseph Corbett, CFO of the Postal Service, warned this month that the organization might not be able to meet all financial obligations for next year, given ongoing trends.

The Postal Service is seeking approval from Congress and the Postal Regulatory Commission on a number of major changes to its services. It has proposed enacting an “exigent price increase” for 2011 that must be approved by the PRC, its oversight body. The USPS has also asked for permission to reduce home delivery to five days per week and promised to make its consumer- and business-facing services more convenient.

Direct mailers and catalogers have said the range of price changes would have drastic negative effects on their businesses.

Greg Frey, PR representative for delivery, online services, post offices and retail at the USPS, declined comment, noting that the monthly numbers provided by the PRC are unaudited and that the Postal Service typically only comments on quarterly and yearly numbers.

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