2-cent stamp price increase set for May
WASHINGTON - The US Postal Service announced yesterday that the price of a first-class stamp will rise to 44 cents on May 11.
That gives plenty of time to stock up on Forever Stamps, which will continue to sell at the current 42-cent rate until the increase occurs. They will remain valid in the future regardless of rate increases.
"The Postal Service is not immune to rising costs which are affecting homes and businesses across America today," said Postmaster General John Potter. "Even with the increases, the Postal Service continues to offer some of the lowest postage prices in the world."
Postage rates go up annually in May, with the new prices announced in February. The overall change is tied to the rate of inflation in the year before.
While the new 44-cent rate covers the first ounce of first-class mail, the price for each additional ounce will remain unchanged at 17 cents.
Postal officials estimate the increase will cost the average household $3 a year.
Buffeted by rising costs and declining mail volume, the Postal Service lost $2.8 billion last year and, unless the economy turns around, is headed toward much larger losses this year.
The post office has been cutting costs, reducing work hours, and has asked Congress to ease requirements for advance funds for retiree benefits and to allow mail to be delivered five days a week instead of six.