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Postal Rate Change


TAXBILLY
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The new postal rates kick in Monday. Present rate is 0.39 for the first ounce and 0.24 for each additional ounce.

New rate is .041 for the first ounce and 0.17 for each additional ounce making multiple ounce mailings cheaper.

Not so fast there! Letters now cannot weigh more than 3.5 ounces to get that rate. If your "letter" weighs more than 3.5 ounces, it is not a letter. It is either a large envelope or a package. A large envelope weighing less than 7 ounces costs more to mail than what we used to call a letter of the same weight.

I heard that you could buy 39 cent stamps that will be good for ever. Is that offer still available?

The "forever" stamp currently costs 41 cents.

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I went to the Postal Service web site and I believe they will win the prize for the most confusing web site. When I finally found a page for postal rates, it was for the old rates. I know that I am getting old and senile, but I don't think I am getting as bad as their web site made me feel. I did call the post office and asked if they have a brochure with the new rates, and they said they would send me one. I wonder why they didn't send everyone a brochure when they first determined what the rates were going to be.

Gene

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The "forever" stamps are currently .41 cents each and are good forever if you don't use them up before the rate goes up again. If the rate goes up, the "forever" stamps will then be sold at the new rate and will be good forever; for as long as you have any. I currently have 3 rolls of .39 cent stamps so will have to purchase 300 .02 cent stamps. I also have 200 "forever" stamps that I can gamble with and hold. I can continue to buy stamps at the .41 cent rate and keep the forevers for when the rate goes up again. Is there something wrong with this picture? I think there is.

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I don't think its you because today I purchase some of those forever stamps and will hold them until the price of postage goes up. Unless of course it goes down DON'T THINK SO. Thanks for reminding me to get 2 cent stamps. Actually I would prefer to put 41 1 cent stamps on the envelope but the post office would probably return the letters to me because they could not read the address.

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Buying the Forever stamps is a horrible investment in my oppinion. The potential for this to excede inflation? Probably not great. Great way for the post office to get everyone to 'invest' in them and give them your money now to hold.

But after saying that, I actually have two books of them in my pocket at the moment with full intentions of placing them on my outgoing mail starting as soon as I run out of my old ones.

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The "FOREVER" stamp is a cute attention getter, but I'm still trying to figure out it is a good deal. Assuming the money invested in the stamp would earn 5% per year if invested in a safe investment, the next postal rate increase would need to be a multiple of 2 cents per year, whenever it occurs, in order for the holder to break even on the original investment in the stamp. And that doesn"t even factor in the probability of storing the stamps while waiting for an appropriate increase to have made the original invesment worthwhile.

Beyond the "novelty" effect, it seems like the only time to buy & hold "FOREVER" stamps would be just before the next rate increase, and given the track record of the USPS, I'm betting they will just happen to run short on supply at about that time.

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Well, it is not a good investment for sure, but all offices (our offices) have two rolls of extra stamps... so eventhough they are not "forever" stamps, all of us have invested in the postal office because all the time we have extra stamps on our possession when the new rates kick in. I guess I will buy "forever" as the back up and run very limited on the regular stamps.

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Pacun: As a practical matter I'll do pretty much the same thing because I also keep a couple of rolls on hand all the time. And I'll pat myself on the back when the next rate increase comes along. Assuming it's two years from now and the amount is 6 cents, I'll congratulate myself for saving $12 on those two rolls of stamps at that time. (Minus the $10 the money would have earned during the same time period). Of course, if the rate increase is only 3-4 cents, I'll just keep quiet.

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Well, the only real benefit I see is simply that when the inevitable change comes along, you will not have to worry about running out and buying 2¢ or 3¢ stamps for the number of remaining stamps on hand. You will just keep using them until they are gone, and then buy more. If you buy them not to 'hold' and save, but just buy them all the time, routinely, you will not be 'investing' but you will be covered when the change does come.

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>>when the next rate increase comes along<<

Call me sentimental, but I think they are wrecking the country. First they took away the great American tradition of standing in line at the post ofice at midnight on April 15th. And they are pushing so hard to get us to mail things before December 10th. Now this--no more standing in line for the penny stamps. At least we can still stand in line at the post office for money orders on the first of every month.

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>>a 20 page pdf file on the new rates<<

I had to download that yesterday. It took me ages to find out exactly what "letter-size" meant according to shape-based pricing. It doesn't bother me that I can't mail pencils any more, because I've already switched to computers anyway, but I don't think it's fair that you can't get a full fourth ounce. Of course, my favorite is the flexibility test, especially the pictures! And I'm glad they are finally doing something about mail that doesn't read sideways--that's always been one of my priorities for the federal government.

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