On Thursday, November 9, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) approved the postage rate increase that is scheduled to go into effect on Sunday, January 21. In addition to a first class stamp going from $.49 to $.50 (2% increase), post cards going from $.34 to $.35 (3% increase) and metered letters going from $.46 to $.47 (2.2% increase), the changes will impact direct mail marketers and publishers across the board.
The PRC approved the changes for the following categories of mail: first‐class, standard, periodical, package services and special services products. The rate increase had been in the works for some months and is based upon the annualized Consumer Price Index (CPI) of approximately 2% for 2017 as well increases in freight costs.
The USPS rate announcement from last October stated, “The proposed prices would raise Mailing Services product prices approximately 1.9 percent, and most Shipping Services products will average a 3.9 percent price increase. While Mailing Services price increases are limited based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI), Shipping Services prices are adjusted strategically, according to market conditions and the need to maintain affordable services for customers.”
Because commercial and non-profit postage rate calculations are complicated, it is difficult to state in general terms just how much these changes will impact the postage of each individual project. We encourage our mailing customers to contact your account representative to request a review of your mailing list to see how these changes will effect your mailing budget. Meanwhile, if customers have a project coming up at the beginning of the year, it would be best to get it in the mail before the January 21 rate change.