USPS business operations up, but total revenue remains down

The U.S. Postal Service urged for postal reform and regulatory relief in its fiscal year 2017 third quarter earnings report.

USPS logged a net loss for the quarter of $2.1 billion, an increase in net loss of $573 million, compared to the same quarter last year. Controllable loss for the quarter was $587 million, an increase in controllable loss of $35 million, due to higher transportation costs.

Operating expenses were $18.8 billion, a decrease of $461 million, or 2.4 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. It noted that expenses for retiree health benefits and workers compensation declined by $869 million and $1.0 billion, respectively, but were partially offset by $1.2 billion in higher retirement expenses largely driven by changes in Office of Personnel Management actuarial assumptions and interest rates.

Revenue from first-class mail and marketing mail fell $422 million and $150 million, respectively, over the prior year quarter, due largely to lower volumes, according to the Postal Service.

However, revenue from its shipping and packages business increased to $473 million, or 11.3 percent.

Postmaster General and CEO Megan J. Brennan said of the earnings report: “Our financial situation is serious, but solvable. The continuation of aggressive management actions, and legislative and regulatory reform, will return us to financial stability and enable the Postal Service to maintain the long-term affordability of mail, invest in America’s mailing and shipping industry, and best serve the American public."

The Postal Service urged for the advancement of the Postal Service Reform Act of 2017 in order to sustain long-term financially stability.

Read the full report here.

Reader comments

Sat, Aug 12, 2017

Very few letters, BIRTHDAY Cards, and a MOUNTAIN of junk mail than fills garbage landfills. Cost of maintaining landfills should be added to cost of USPS.

Fri, Aug 11, 2017 Susan S. Pastin Chicago

The Post Office needs to offer more services, such as check cashing, to create new revenue streams - and also helped the unbanked.

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Edward A. Zurndorfer Certified Financial Planner
Mike Causey Columnist
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