The USPS expects to incur inflationary costs worth $1 billion

The U.S. Postal Service plans to hikes rates in January as a hedge against a projected $1 billion inflationary hit on 2022 operating costs, as the USPS reported a $459 million third-quarter loss, which excluded a $2.15 billion impact from reform legislation addressing prefunded retiree healthcare.

The USPS also announced peak season surcharges on commercial and retail rates from Oct. 2 to Jan. 22, including a 75-cent increase in the commercial rate for Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express flat-rate boxes and envelopes. Zone-based increases range from 25 cents in zones 1-4 up to 10 lbs., to $6.50 for zones 5-9 between 26-70 lbs.

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy told the American Enterprise Institute last month that he estimates the agency will see a reduction of 50,000 positions over the next decade, mostly through attrition and retirements, while postal unions are calling for workforce increases to meet demand. Both major unions have concerns about DeJoy’s 10-year “Delivering for America” improvement plan; the National Association of Letter Carriers will begin new contract negotiations in 2024.

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