With increases in consumer spending expected to remain solid during the remainder of the year, the NRF on Tuesday upped its forecast for retail sales in 2016 to 3.4%, from the 3.1% forecast earlier. Online and other non-store sales, which are included in the overall figure, are expected to increase 7% to 10% year-over-year rather than the 6% to 9% forecast earlier. Retail sales in the first half of 2016 performed at a solid pace, growing close to 4% on a year-over-year basis, according to NRF calculations, which exclude automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants. NRF expects gross domestic product to grow between 1.9% and 2.4%.
-Revenue of $17.5 billion, essentially unchanged compared to same quarter last year
-Net loss of $2.1 billion
-USPS remains focused on aggressive management actions and legislative and regulatory reforms to provide Americans with a financially sustainable Postal Service.
The U.S. Postal Service reported total revenue of $17.5 billion for the second quarter of fiscal 2019 (January 1, 2019 – March 31, 2019), a decrease of $8 million, or essentially flat, compared to the same quarter last year.
First-Class Mail revenue declined by $217 million, or 3.3 percent, on a volume decline of 576 million pieces, or 3.9 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. Marketing Mail revenue declined by $155 million, or 3.9 percent, on a volume decline of 959 million pieces, or 5.2 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. Meanwhile, Shipping and Packages revenue increased by $253 million, or 4.9 percent, on volume growth of 5 million pieces, or 0.3 percent, compared to the same quarter last year.
Total operating expenses were $19.6 billion for the quarter, an increase of $751 million, or 4.0 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. Excluding costs impacted by actuarial revaluation, discount rate changes, and amortization of unfunded liabilities, which are outside of management’s control, expenses increased by $154 million, or 0.8 percent, compared to the same quarter last year.
“The Postal Service continues to pursue aggressive management actions and to seek legislative and regulatory reforms to address our overall cost structure and enhance revenue-generating opportunities,” said Postmaster General and CEO Megan J. Brennan. “Our focus remains on meeting the expectations of the American public, continuing to invest in the future of the organization, and continually delivering innovations and increased value for both the senders and receivers of mail and packages.”
The net loss for the quarter totaled nearly $2.1 billion, an increase of $747 million, compared to a net loss of $1.3 billion for the same quarter last year, however, the controllable loss for the quarter was $806 million, compared to a controllable loss of $656 million for the same quarter last year.
“We continue to face challenges from the ongoing migration of mail to electronic alternatives, and we are legally limited under current law in how we can price our products and streamline our legacy costs,” said Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President Joseph Corbett. “Within the framework of our current business model, we are executing to grow revenue and reduce operating expenses.”