America

U.S. Postal Service Reports $1.3 Billion Loss In First Quarter

A U.S. Postal service employee loads his van as he prepares to leave the loading dock to deliver mail from the Los Feliz Post Office in Los Angeles. i i

hide captionA U.S. Postal service employee loads his van as he prepares to leave the loading dock to deliver mail from the Los Feliz Post Office in Los Angeles.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
A U.S. Postal service employee loads his van as he prepares to leave the loading dock to deliver mail from the Los Feliz Post Office in Los Angeles.

A U.S. Postal service employee loads his van as he prepares to leave the loading dock to deliver mail from the Los Feliz Post Office in Los Angeles.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The United States Postal Service said it lost $1.3 billion in first quarter of its fiscal year. While that's still a huge number, it's a big drop from the $3.1 billion loss the service posted during the same time period last year.

Still, CNN Money reports, the service is still in trouble. It reports:

"The service was hurt as the volume of first-class mail, which most consumers use to pay bills and stay in touch, decreased by 4.5.%, said USPS chief financial officer Joseph Corbett. But it got help as shipping and package volume increased 4% compared to the prior year.

"... The key culprit remains a 2006 congressional mandate, under which it has to pre-fund healthcare benefits for future retirees. The USPS has been borrowing billions of dollars from taxpayers to make up for the shortfalls."

This news comes just days after USPS announced it was going to eliminate Saturday delivery of first class mail beginning the week of Aug. 5.

The New York Times reports that service was able to make an almost 10 percent cut to its operating costs from last year, but they say those cuts are not enough to bring the service back to a sound financial footing.

"I'd like to say we can solve these problems on our own," Bloomberg quotes Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe saying at a board meeting today. "The scale of our challenge requires major legislative reform to our business model. We do not want to be a burden on the American taxpayers."

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