Breaking: USPS New Pricing for 2018

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DMM Advisory

Classification — keeping you informed about classification and mailing standards of the United States Postal Service

USPS™ Announces New Prices for 2018

The Postal Service™ filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) today of price changes to take effect Jan. 21, 2018. The new prices, if approved, include a one-cent increase in the price of a First-Class Mail® Forever® stamp from 49 cents to 50 cents. Postcard stamps and metered letters would also have a one-cent increase.

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.

The proposed Mailing Services price changes include:

Product Current Proposed
Letters (1 oz.) 49 cents 50 cents
Letters additional ounces 21 cents 21 cents
Letters (metered) 46 cents 47 cents
Outbound International Letters (1 oz.) $1.15 $1.15
Domestic Postcards 34 cents 35 cents


The proposed domestic Priority Mail Flat Rate® retail price changes are:


 Product Current Proposed
Small Flat Rate Box $7.15 $7.20
Medium Flat Rate Box $13.60 $13.65
Large Flat Rate Box $18.85 $18.90
APO/FPO Large Flat Rate Box $17.35 $17.40
Regular Flat Rate Envelope $6.65 $6.70
Legal Flat Rate Envelope $6.95 $7.00
Padded Flat Rate Envelope $7.20 $7.25


The PRC will review the prices before they are scheduled to take effect on Jan. 21, 2018. The complete Postal Service price filings with the new prices for all products can be found on the PRC site under the Daily Listings section at For the Mailing Services filing, see Oct. 6, 2017, Docket No. R2018-1. For the Shipping Services filing, see Oct. 6, 2017, Docket No. CP2018-8.


The Domestic Mail Manual (DMM®) and DMM Advisories are available on Postal Explorer®(

Business People Sitting in an Office Building Chatting

Is Blockchain The New Supply Chain?

Blockchain!  The new hip and technical term everyone is hearing more about; what is it exactly and how will it affect your Supply Chain in the very near future?

Throughout modern history, the majority of anything involving the sale/transfer of goods and services between two or more parties was recorded on some form of a physical ledger. With the development of the computer and the internet over the last several decades, technology has proven that the use of a physical ledger is no longer efficient and can be highly risky for business.

Technology dictates how we buy and sell and keeping records of that has become increasingly more complex and leaves too much room for inaccurate data and in some cases, even fraud.

Take for example, a widget manufacturer; the company’s supply chain can be vast.  Sourcing materials from multiple vendors, assembling products lines and having third party logistics providers transport product direct to customers. Without Blockchain technology, a company is forced to rely on transactional data from multiple intermediaries who own and control their data.  This is inefficient as parts of the data can be changed by various owners and therefore, visibility for the manufacturer and other parties in the supply chain is highly limited.

And here’s where Blockchain technology can be a game-changer– as every transaction or data input occurs, it would be placed into its own “Block.”  When another Block of data is created it is then linked to the previous Block.  All parties have permission to see the data Blocks and once they are created, they cannot be changed, moved or deleted unless all parties involved review and agree to the changes. This is HUGE for transparency. Who doesn’t love transparency? Especially with your own business – honesty is the best policy, I always say.

As technology continues to develop there will be more and more room for error and fraud.  Blockchain is a simple and efficient solution to provide value and security for companies, consumers and logistics providers to ensure that the data they operate off of is correct and tamper proof.


Can Tesla’s New Semi-Truck Pave the Way for an Entire Industry?

The commercial trucking industry is integral to our daily lives.  In the United States approximately 70% of all freight is moved by commercial trucks; the figures are higher for food, agricultural and pharmaceutical products. Essentially, nearly everything you come in contact with on a daily basis has at some point, been on a commercial truck.

Interestingly enough, these goods/products are moved across the country by trucks that have gone virtually unchanged for nearly 50 years; what has changed is the technology utilized to organize and move goods more efficiently.  The core problem for the commercial trucking industry remains that freight is moved by energy/fuel that may not be available or will become too expensive in the near future.

This is where Tesla comes in.

Tesla has been breaking barriers in the automotive industry with the success of their fully electric fleet of vehicles for consumers.  Now Tesla is going to try to change the hearts and minds of the commercial trucking industry with the unveiling of their fully electric Semi-Truck come September, 2017.

Manufacturers for the commercial trucking industry today seem more worried about driver shortages than what their trucks will run on in the next 5 to 10 years.  But they need to also be concerned about fuel prices and that’s where Tesla has the answer.

As electric vehicle technologies become more common and less expensive, trucking companies will quickly see the benefit of operating those vehicles over fossil fuel.  The cost of electricity will also be managed with companies creating their own electricity through solar, wind, water, etc.  Not to mention the significant federal and state tax credits that these vehicles will allow companies to apply for.

Tesla is the ONLY Company to successfully bring to market a fully electric and non-polluting vehicle fleet and the same will be true with their new semi-truck.

The trucking industry in the US alone operates over 15 million gasoline powered vehicles and economists are predicting that this ‘cheap gas phase’ we have had for the last two years is going to be short lived.  Fuel prices are expected to increase by 75% by 2020 and the cost for charging electric vehicles will be significantly less than it is today.

One thing is for sure, significant change in the commercial trucking industry is coming.  Whether it is using other forms of alternative fuel rather than electric; the fact remains that in our lifetime gasoline and diesel will be a thing of the past because it simply is inefficient and costs too much.


No longer your father’s supply chain!

It’s obviously no longer your father’s supply chain!  We have all been witnesses of what we consider significant changes to traditional supply chains.  The Wall Street Journal is now reporting that Kellogg Company will remove the leg of actual store deliveries from its traditional supply chain to retail grocery stores and just deliver their sought after goods directly to the grocery store warehouses.  This means the grocery chains will now have the responsibility to handle the actual store deliveries.

So what’s the impact here, well for Kellogg, they intend to close 39 distribution centers and will eliminate approximately 1000 jobs.  So for Kellogg workers this is certainly a major blow.  For the grocery chains, this means more goods moving through their distribution centers for actual store delivery; obviously at additional costs.  We also wonder if the reduced costs Kellogg will benefit from by making these changes will be passed onto their customers in terms of reduced prices for the “delivered” goods.  Somehow we don’t think that will be the case however.

Here is a link to the full article.

Tony Nuzio, ICC Logistics

US Shoppers Not Satisfied with In-Store Shopping

A recent article published by Internet Retailer provides some very interesting statistics regarding US based shoppers dissatisfaction with in-store shopping.  The results are quite interesting and based on a survey conducted by consulting firm, Capgemini.  The results stated that 31% of US shoppers viewed “shopping in stores as a chore, while 17% said they’ d rather wash dishes or clothes than venture into a store.”  Now these comments are very interesting because when my wife asks me to go shopping at the mall with her, I tell her I’d rather have root canal.

Capgemini surveyed some 500 retail, executives and 6000 shoppers from around the world.  The report is titled, “Why Physical Retail Stores Need a Reboot.”  And here are some of the key highlights from the report.

  • In store shoppers are dissatisfied because there is a lack of choices in the store compared to the E-commerce shopping experience
  • Consumers are bringing their on-line shopping expectations into the store, including personalized and hassle free shopping and not receiving that same experience in the store
  • 71% of the respondents stated there is an inability to compare products when they are in the store
  • 75% of the respondents stated they wish they could survey the in-store inventory before they make the trip to the store
  • The survey also states that consumer satisfaction is “worryingly low” as one in two retailers received negative score from consumers
  • The retailers have a range of challenges, not the least is adequate training of store associates

The results of the Capgemini survey are very insightful.  Is it the online shopping experience that is so much better than the instore shopping experience?  Or is it the retailers failure to properly train their store associates on how to go above and beyond their comfort zone to provide the instore shoppers with an unforgettable shopping experience.  We suspect the dissatisfaction with the instore shopping experience has been going on for years, but now those same shoppers have something to compare their negative instore shopping experience to.

You can read the full article here

Tony Nuzio, ICC Logistics

Shore Up Profits By Plugging Up Leaks

Check out Tony’s great article on how to Shore Up Profits by Plugging up Leaks in Parcel Magazine!

Leave a comment and let us know your thoughts!

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