The U.S. Postal Service had a second-quarter net loss of $303 million, $123 million greater than planned, USPS chief financial officer and executive vice president Richard J. Strasser Jr. told the agency's Board of Governors at its monthly meeting yesterday.
Strasser also said the USPS expects continuing loss in volume during the third quarter, which ends May 22. He said the USPS could lose as much as $800 million in the third quarter if the economy fails to improve enough to increase mail volume.
The postal service's second quarter was from Dec. 1 to Feb. 22.
The USPS lost $1.7 billion in the 2001 fiscal year. Postmaster General John E. Potter told Congress last month that losses this year likely would exceed $2 billion.
As expected, the board also said at the meeting that it accepted the Postal Rate Commission's recommendation for a three-cent increase in the price of a First-Class stamp to 37 cents as part of an overall rate increase of 7.7 percent. The new rates will take effect June 30 and are expected to bring in $500 million in extra revenue.
In other news from the meeting:
• The board approved postal management's request to file a new classification and flexible pricing proposal with the PRC for Confirm, the USPS' flat-mail and letter-mail system that enables senders or recipients to track delivery of their mail. Confirm uses a USPS Planet Code to uniquely identify each mail piece.
• The board approved funding for Phase I of the Postal Automated Redirection System. Designed for installation on letter automation sorters, PARS will identify undeliverable-as-addressed mail during first handling and redirect it to the correct destination.
• Potter said he was pleased with congressional and mailing industry reaction to the postal service's transformation plan that was submitted April 4 to Congress.