Postal News from November 2005
November 30, 2005 -- Air Cargo World has reported that "DHL plans to raise its express rates in the United States between 2 and 8 percent in 2006, keeping pace with price increases already announced by FedEx and UPS."
November 30, 2005 -- Expansion has reported that "The Spanish government is looking to shake up the national postal market and reduce the dominance of Correos y Telegrafos, the public operator. Correos controls 93 per cent of what is ostensibly a deregulated market and has exclusive contracts to provide postal services to the state, its single biggest client, which accounts for 20.5 per cent of Correos' annual turnover of more than 1.7bn euros. These contracts should actually be put out to tender on a cost and merit basis, the government has decided."
November 30, 2005 -- According to IPPMedia, "Tanzania Postal Bank's (TPB) customers who possess Uhuru Cards have a reason to smile, thanks to the bank's decision to bring banking services to their doorsteps."
November 30, 2005 -- Dow Jones has reported that "Singapore Post Ltd. Executive Vice President (Postal Services and Administration) William Tan Soo Hock retires at end-2005, after 13 years with the company. Following Tan's retirement, the postal services division will be led by Woo Keng Leong, senior vice president (Mail Business)."
November 30, 2005 -- The Republican American has reported that "The U.S. Postal Service says it has retrained workers at the post office after a second time- sensitive mailing from a community group was misdirected and delayed. An announcement of a Democratic party rally that was supposed to arrive three or four days before the Oct. 30 event showed up in mailboxes as late as two weeks after it was over. That snafu occurred about two weeks before the post office mistakenly shipped 10,000 solicitation letters from the fire department to Springfield, Mass., instead of processing them locally, causing the letters to go out more than a week late."
November 30, 2005 -- According to the Hillsboro Argus, "A Reno, Nev., man indicted last week for stealing Legos in Washington County may face federal charges after U.S. Postal Service inspectors served a search warrant at his residence Thanksgiving Day."
November 30, 2005 -- Greene County Online has reported that "More than $540,000 in checks the Greeneville Light & Power System has written are missing in the mail, according to an announcement made Monday by Bob Windham, the utility's controller. Windham told the GL&PS board of directors that 124 checks he wrote for payments on accounts for which GL&PS is a customer recently were misplaced in the mail."
November 30, 2005 -- The Associated Press has reported that "Postal carriers who had to be pulled off their routes on Monday because of bad weather were back at work on Tuesday. Advertisement But the district manager in Sioux Falls, Clem Felchle, said they might have trouble getting through some outlying areas that haven't been plowed yet. About 100 offices in the region remained without power on Tuesday, including a distribution center in Huron that has not had electricity or heat since Sunday night."
November 30, 2005 -- As the Seattle Post-Intelligencer has noted, "You don't have to be a film star or former president to get your mug on a postage stamp. Thanks to a few online vendors, mom, dad, kids, even Fido and Fluffy can enjoy a little philatelic fame. Like miniature versions of photo greeting cards, customized postage stamps are the latest trend in personal correspondence. Through U.S. Postal Service-approved vendors, including PictureItPostage.com, PhotoStamps.com and Zazzle.com, consumers can transform family photos and drawings into envelope-ready adhesives."
November 30, 2005 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal), published by the MRU Consultancy, has reported that:
Osterreichische Post has again confirmed its expansion plansfor Eastern Europe. In a circular sent to company managers last week, CEOAnton Wais announced that "Osterreichische Post will be present fromPrague to Bucharest - and beyond". At present, acquisitions in Romania andBulgaria were under consideration and "even the Ukraine is in our sight".
The Austrian government, on the other hand, appears to hesitate when itcomes to the IPO, chiefly because of pressure from the trade union. Thealteration to the government's mission required for an IPO was stillmissing from the agenda of yesterday's meeting of the Council ofMinisters.
The new Norwegian government has stopped the project for an early postalmarket liberalisation by 1 January 2007 decided by its predecessor. TheNorwegian Transport and Communications minister has said that "Themonopoly is still needed to finance unprofitable parts of the universalservice."
Switzerland's Federal Council has decided to not only open the country'smail market from 1 April 2006 (CEP News 47/05) but also to impose VAT onthe deregulated areas (letters over 100 grams).
The biggest private employer in the Netherlands, TNT N.V. andfour trade unions have concluded a new wage agreement. With a 29-monthvalidity, the agreement will have retrospect effect from 1 May 2005 andexpire on 1 October 2007. Under the agreement, Dutch TNT workers willreceive almost 3% higher wages.
The Dutch TNT is obviously serious about wanting to expandits position as number two on the German mail market. TNTs subsidiaryEuropost is pressing ahead with the creation of a nationwide uniformdelivery network by setting up Briefpartner System AG, which will bringtogether the current approx. 160 regional delivery partners in a kind offranchise system.
Post Danmark is suffering from a growing problem of internal theft.
UPS has enjoyed significant growth in Austria and Hungary.
The MRU, founded in 1992, is the only consultancy in Europe, which has specialised in the market of courier-, express- and parcel services. For large-scale shippers and CEP-services in particular, the MRU provides interdisciplinary advice for all major questions of the market, as there are for example market entry, product design, organisation, and EDP.To learn more about the stories reported above, contact CEP News.
November 30, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "Deutsche Post logistics subsidiary DHL Danzas Air & Ocean is expanding in the Pacific Rim with a new $10 million distribution hub near Auckland airport, New Zealand. Earlier this year DHL entered into a joint freight venture with New Zealand."
November 30, 2005 -- DM News has reported that "DHL's recent customer service problems may benefit FedEx and UPS in their current quarters and into next year, according to a stock research report released yesterday by investment bank Morgan Stanley. However, though DHL's September hub integration was a disappointment, the company said the aftereffects won't cause a long-term deviation from DHL Express' overall financial objectives. In the Morgan Stanley report, DHL acknowledged losing several large customers -- $280 million of revenue, representing nearly 6 percent of its business -- because of difficulties after the integration of its air hub in Wilmington, OH, in early September. An earlier Morgan Stanley report said on-time delivery fell to 55 percent in some cases."
November 30, 2005 -- From the Federal Register: The Postal Service has posted a correction to earlier published International Mail rates.
November 30, 2005 -- KPHO.com has reported that "Local postal workers of the National Association of Letter Carriers plan on staging an informational picket Wednesday. They say the picket is not about stopping work, but rather an attempt to gather postal workers to inform the public about their current workload conditions. Union officials say because of staff shortages, postal workers often must work extremely long hours. In fact, postal carriers say their workload is so big, they are sometimes unable get to certain routes until hours as late as midnight."
November 29, 2005 -- UPS has announced a $2 million donation to support relief and recovery efforts for the victims of the devastating earthquake that struck South Asia last month.
November 29, 2005 -- DM News postal commentator Cary Baer expressed his "Shock of shocks. I just heard that the Senate decided not to fund the famous or was it infamous bridge to nowhere in Alaska. This despite the well-publicized pout and resignation threat on the Senate floor by Sen. Ted Stevens, R-AK. If this cataclysmic event can occur, perhaps it's not too late for something positive to happen to postal reform legislation. Or, perhaps, just to those financial elements of reform that we can all agree on."
November 29, 2005 -- From PR Newswire: "Harte-Hanks, Inc. has announced that its data quality services offering, Harte-Hanks Advanced Data Quality (ADQ), has been enhanced to include LACSLink, a United States Postal Service(R) (USPS) product that provides mailers with an automated method of obtaining new addresses whenever a rural-style address is changed to a city- style address. Such address changes are known as "911 address conversions."
November 29, 2005 -- AFP has reported that "The media magnate Rupert Murdoch predicted a gloomy future for newspapers, which he said are failing to adapt to the realities of the Internet. "Outside New York, it's all monopoly newspapers," Murdoch added. "Some have good work in them, but it tends to be over-written, boring and elitist, not a reflection of the general mood of the public. "And I think you're going to find their circulations falling more than they have already have."
November 29, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "TNT NV's Europost unit is planning to set up its own unified mail delivery system in Germany to close in on local rival Deutsche Post AG. Europost hopes to unite 120 of its 160 regional mail delivery partners in Germany under a single Europost franchise structure. Europost is 71% owned by TNT and 29% by Hermes, a unit of German mail order company Otto Versand."
November 29, 2005 -- The Malta Independent has reported that "Representatives from 41 European postal operators, including Maltapost, recently attended a meeting in Vilamoure, Portugal to adopt a revised strategy for PostEurop at its 19th Plenary Assembly. The revised strategy comes at a decisive moment in the evolution of the European postal environment. Towards 2009, when the European institutions will decide on the further development of the European postal market, important changes will have already thoroughly reshaped the postal industry landscape. The gathering was dedicated to positioning the European postal operators at the forefront of legislative and other developments."
November 29, 2005 -- According to the Newark Star-Ledger, "Trying to make life a little easier for its customers, the U.S. Postal Service is keeping some post offices open an extra two hours on weekdays and an extra three hours on Saturdays. The selected post offices -- about 280 of the 3,000 in the metropolitan New York and New Jersey region -- now close at 7 p.m. weekdays and 4 p.m. Saturdays."
November 29, 2005 -- DM News has reported that "The U.S Postal Service said yesterday that 17 million packages have been sent via the agency's Carrier Pickup service since it launched in February 2004. Carrier Pickup lets customers go online to request next-day package pickups. There is no pickup fee because the packages are picked up from the customers as part of the carrier's normal delivery route. Packages must be prepared with the appropriate postage and ready to go before they are picked up."
November 29, 2005 -- Myrtle Beach Online has reported that "A report of irritated eyes and throats had postal workers worried someone was sending dangerous chemicals through the mail. Turns out it was just pepper spray an employee used to keep dogs away. Dozens of county, state and federal officers along with a hazardous material team and a bomb squad rushed to the St. Helena Island post office after the report Monday morning, fearing a possible attack. The post office was closed for more than four hours."
November 29, 2005 -- The Journal of Commerce has reported that "Germany's Deutsche Post still expects its DHL unit to meet its long-term goals in the United States despite a negative financial impact from the integration of its air operations at Wilmington, Ohio. The company said on Monday that although the September hub integration was a disappointment, the effects should not be enough to cause a long-term deviation from the division's overall financial objectives."
November 29, 2005 -- Traffic World has reported that:
TNT Express is expanding its Middle East network with a new station inAl Ain in the UAE and a road express operations center in Abu Dhabi.Larger operations are expected in the Gulf region over the next twelvemonths. TNT Express said it will invest $810,000 in opening the newfacilities by the end of the year in response to growth in the region.
Beginning November 28, Kitty Hawk's ground freight network will include Baltimore, Boston,Hartford, Conn., Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Richmond and Norfolk,Va., in addition to the 28 cities launched on Oct. 31. This latestexpansion is in line with the company's previously announced plans toexpand its ground freight network to 46 cities during the first quarter of2006.
Earlytrends this year indicate that consumers are shopping for electronics, housewares, and toys,according to a survey of activity over the Thanksgiving weekend. This year145 million shoppers, up from 133 million in 2004, spent $27.8 billion, a21.9 percent increase over last year's $22.8 billion.
November 29, 2005 -- The Standard (via Hoovers) has reported that "United Parcel Service, the US delivery giant, is urging the Hong Kong government to speed up its open skies policy and hopes to capture the Japanese and Taiwanese cargo markets by launching daily flights in the near future."
November 29, 2005 -- As the Power Report has noted, "Postage is, by far, the highest cost in producing a mail piece. While assessing the efficiency of print and mail operations, IMERGE Consulting found that postage represented about 70 percent of utilities' total bill production cost. The average cost of producing a bill is about 40 cents per mail piece, with postage accounting for about 29 cents. The other major production cost categories are: paper, labor, insertion, and printing. These costs are solely for print and mail production and do not include all the IT costs for the creation and maintenance of the print streams. The cost of printing and mailing are significant when compared to the low cost of the electronic delivery channels."
November 29, 2005 -- According to the Wall Street Journal, "Federal Express illustrates how successful purpose brands are built. A job had existed practically forever: the "I need to send this from here to there -- as fast as possible with perfect certainty" job. Some U.S. customers hired the Postal Service's airmail; a few desperate souls paid couriers to sit on airplanes. But because nobody had yet designed a service to do this job well, the brands of the unsatisfactory alternative services became tarnished when they were hired for this purpose. But after Federal Express specifically designed its service to do that exact job, and did it wonderfully again and again, the FedEx brand began popping into people's minds. This was not built through advertising. It was built as people hired the service and found that it got the job done. FedEx became a purpose brand -- in fact, it became a verb in the international language of business that is inextricably linked with that specific job."
November 29, 2005 -- As the Las Cruces Sun-News has noted, "The U.S. Postal Service is an easy target for criticism. It is a huge bureaucracy that has gained very nearly complete independence from the government with its promises of efficiency that will upgrade its service. This service touches nearly every one of us every day. It experiences major challenges nearly every day with inclement weather, transportation, electronic failures and don't forget the vicious dogs. It also raises rates with regularity. But how long should it take for a letter mailed in Las Cruces to reach Los Angeles, Fort Worth, Albuquerque or even El Paso? Should there not be overnight delivery within the city of Las Cruces or Doña Ana County? How many days, weeks or months are required for a piece of mail from Anyplace, USA, to arrive at a Las Cruces address? Complaints about the local postal service seem to have gone unanswered far too long."
November 29, 2005 -- According to Air Cargo World, "In a sharp increase of its intra-Asia operations, DHL will start overnight express service between Tokyo and Shanghai using dedicated space on a Northwest Airlines freighter."
November 29, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "Proposed price controls for Royal Mail have been delayed by its regulator amid wrangling over contentious plans to force the state-owned postal operator to implement significant efficiency savings."
November 29, 2005 -- The Edge Daily has reported that "Pos Malaysia Bhd's courier division, PosLaju, has expanded its total delivery destinations to 92 countries worldwide, following the addition of 30 new destinations. Delivery to the 30 new destinations under PosLaju's international services also known as expedited mail services (EMS), will take effect Jan 1, 2006, it said on Nov 29."
November 29, 2005 -- The Rio Rancher Observer has reported that "After making little progress with United States Postal Service officials, Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.) has decided to go straight to the top. Last week, Domenici sent a letter to USPS Postmaster General John Potter requesting a meeting on additional post office locations in Rio Rancho."
November 29, 2005 -- The BBC has reported that "The consumer watchdogs for the energy and postal industries have been called "feeble" by a committee of MPs. In its latest report, the Public Accounts Committee said Energywatch and Postwatch have been heard of by only a tiny minority of consumers. It also said they were unimpressive and did not record how effective they were in helping members of the public. Both Energywatch and Postwatch said they did not agree with the committee's findings. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman, Edward Leigh MP, said the two watchdogs should cut their costs which have risen unjustifiably."
November 29, 2005 -- The Oberlin Review has said that "As the use of postal mail moves further toward becoming a lost practice, two College senior art majors are working to create a new perspective on the mail. Garrett Miller and Adam Morse recently began the Envelope Collective, an ongoing experiment that involves sending art, in envelope or other forms, through the mail."
November 29, 2005 -- According to the Madison Courier, the "Stamp increase isn't unreasonable."
November 28, 2005 -- Union Network International has told its members that "UNI is urging affiliates to press their governments to protect postal services in the upcoming trade round in Hong Kong. UNI has produced a model letter for postal unions to send to their government's trade representative. The aim is to underline union opposition to moves in the trade round in services (GATS) to open the door for private companies to challenge and undermine public postal services. Unions are also being urged to copy their protest by December 5 to Pascal Lamy, the new Director General of the World Trade Organisation in Geneva . In recent months the GATS talks have been stalled by the deep impasse on the general trade round."
November 28, 2005 -- The Kyodo news service has reported that "Just over a quarter of all post offices in Japan fell into the red in fiscal 2004 due largely to a profit decline of nearly 50 percent in the postal savings business, according to an estimate released by Japan Post on Monday."
November 28, 2005 -- B92News has reported that "Public counters at post offices and the Serbian Power Authority will be closed from midday to 1.00 p.m. today as workers stage a warning strike. Unions warn the strike will continue until December 12 if the Serbian parliament doesnÆt table draft legislation on distributing free shares for workers in public companies."
November 28, 2005 -- The Economist has reported that "Direct mail is losing its effectiveness. One of the biggest users of direct mail is the financial services industry, which spent around $2.5 billion on mail shots in America last year. Unfortunately, people seemed less interested than ever in signing up for new credit cards or insurance policies. The response rate from some campaigns has fallen to just 1.4%, according to America's Direct Marketing Association (DMA). In previous years it was well above 2%. When it comes to responding to ôdirect-orderö mail shots (signing up to an offer, as opposed to merely expressing an interest), the rate has fallen even more dramatically, to 0.7% from 3.5% in 2004. The problem seems to be too many envelopes cluttering too many mail boxes, ôleading many consumers to discard the blizzard of solicitations they receiveö, according to Advertising Age."
November 28, 2005 -- According to the Washington Post, "The Friday after Thanksgiving may be the kickoff of the holiday shopping season in malls and stores, but online, the big day is the Monday after Thanksgiving -- today -- when people go back to work."
November 28, 2005 -- As MSNBC has noted, "An Independent Pilots Association plan to picket outside The UPS Store locations in Louisville and other cities with large United Parcel Service Inc. operations is leaving some store franchisees frustrated. The union, which represents UPS pilots, took out a full-page ad in USA Today earlier this month, alerting customers that "informational picketing" was "coming soon to a UPS Store near you."
November 28, 2005 -- DM News has reported that:
November 28, 2005 -- As the Indian Express has noted, "Setting up a courier firm may not be an easy affair in a few months time. India might soon have a postal services regulatory law that would make licences a prerequisite for those who wish set up courier service. These changes are under way in the wake of the government planning to withdraw budgetary support to the postal department and make it a commercial entity."
November 27, 2005 -- According to PC World, "With the holiday shopping season approaching, Google has improved its Froogle product search and comparison shopping engine with a new feature that lets buyers find not only products available online but also local merchants that sell the desired products offline." Of course, you can always use Google to get a gander at some of your favorite catalogs.
November 27, 2005 -- Investments & Pensions Europe has reported that "The Swiss ministry of finance has appointed consulting firm Watson Wyatt to help it assess solutions to problems at the rail and postal pension funds. Watson will have to examine three options. The first is how to deal with the funds without state aid, which would involve higher contributions from employers and employees. The second would be the possibility of a single injection of funds. The third would be a return to the system of partial cover, with a minimal coverage ratio of 80%, a guarantee of the State and a remuneration of the technical overdraft."
November 27, 2005 -- Strategiy has reported that "Empost has partnered with Air Miles to deliver prizes to the winning participants of the new Air Miles promotion. Empost is the official courier company of Air Miles UAE since its inception in the UAE. Air Miles Instant Rewards Promotion, which is on from October 20 to December 31, 2005, gives away thousands of electronic products and Air Miles, besides a brand new Renault Megane, to Air Miles card-bearers shopping at selected outlets. Empost will deliver these prizes directly to the winners within 48 hours."
November 27, 2005 -- According to the Financial Express, "FedEx Delivers is a book you are unlikely to put down in a hurry. FedEx can be counted upon to deliver, without slipping up, every single time. FedEx Delivers gives us an inside look at one of the most important cogs in the world economy. The book is essentially a blueprint for building and sustaining an innovation culture that engages every employee. It looks at leadership practices that enabled the worldÆs leading shipping company to out-think and outperform its competition. Using firsthand accounts from top leaders at FedEx, the book explains how the company became a global powerhouse and one of the most trusted brands by using leadership practices that tapped into the creativity and commitment of its employees."
November 27, 2005 -- The Telegraph has reported that "A long-awaited review by Postcomm, the postal services regulator, that could see Royal Mail authorised to raise the price of a first class stamp from 30p to as high as 39p is expected to be published this week. The review will set out the terms on which Royal Mail is forced to face open competition when its 300-year-old monopoly ends in January."
November 27, 2005 -- The Seattle Times has reported that "The winter/spring issue of Puget Sound Consumers' Checkbook magazine includes a thorough guide to choosing a delivery service for packages and other mail. Puget Sound Consumers' Checkbook surveyed consumers in seven metropolitan areas and asked them to rate the four nationwide delivery services: DHL, FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal Service. Of the four, FedEx consistently rated highest, with 92 percent of those surveyed rating the company superior or adequate. It was followed closely by UPS, with 91 percent rating the company superior or adequate. The Postal Service received a superior or adequate rating from 88 percent of customers, followed by DHL with 71 percent. Interestingly, the Postal Service was rated substantially higher (relative to the other carriers) in the Puget Sound area than in other cities where the magazine surveyed customers."
November 26, 2005 -- WebIndia123 has reported that "Union Communications and Information Technology Minister Dayanidhi Maran today said clearance from the Planning Commission was awaited for the Rs 500 crore outlay sought for computerisation of Postal Departments across the country."
November 25, 2005 -- According to the Asahi Shimbun, "When discussing the pros and cons of postal privatization in Japan, people often refer to New Zealand's case as a prime example of failure."
November 25, 2005 -- According to StopTheACLU.com, "It is official, the United States Postal Service has now folded to the anti-Christmas PC movement. Postal employees are no longer allowed to say to customers Merry Christmas.÷ And if that isn t enough, no more Christmas stamps."
November 25, 2005 -- As TechWeb has noted, "Newspapers' print advertising increased by only 1.6 percent year-over-year in the third quarter, while online advertising jumped 26.7 percent, a trade group said. Spending for print ads totaled $11.4 billion in the quarter, the Newspaper Association of America said. Ad spending online remained a small percentage of the total advertising spend, reaching $518.9 million. Nevertheless, growth in online ads far outpaced print advertising. Online advertising has grown in popularity as advertisers develop better marketing techniques to target particular groups of consumers."
November 25, 2005 -- Silicon.com has reported that "Transportation player FedEx Express plans to equip 50,000 couriers located in 60 countries with wireless devices by 2008. The FedEx PowerPad, a Windows Pocket PC-based device, is Bluetooth-enabled and uses GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) connectivity. The handheld is able to capture signatures electronically, and couriers can access dispatch information without having to go back to their dispatch vehicles. The new FedEx PowerPad will replace the FedEx SuperTracker developed 20 years ago."
November 25, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "A landmark proposal to open up the European Union's services market to cross-border competition passed an important hurdle yesterday, when a European parliament committee voted in favour of breaking down national barriers to service providers. The committee also voted to include so-called services of general economic interest in the scope of the directive. This means that providers of services such as postal delivery, water, waste, electricity and gas could in future face fewer obstacles when trying to win business outside their home state."
November 25, 2005 -- The American Postal Workers Union has told its members that "The APWU has received notification from the USPS that some operations at the facilities listed below would be consolidated, or that the facilities would be the subject of AMP (Area Mail Processing) studies."
November 25, 2005 -- As one columnist for Forbes put it: "Imagine a business where the more you use them, the more irritated you become with them. Now imagine that despite their poor performance, they probably will never improve or go out of business. Where does such a place exist? In the hinterlands of post-Soviet Russia? In a backwater of proto-capitalist China? In Fidel's Cuba? Try a post office in New York. The U.S. Postal Service is getting hammered by FedEx and UPS. Standing in line gives you lots of time to figure out why."
November 25, 2005 -- Les Echos has reported that "The Paris district court has said that it will not rule until November 29 on a challenge by French postal unions to the company agreement of Efiposte, the investment arm of the French post office (La Poste). The unions are asking for the agreement not to be applied to the transfer of 900 La Poste employees to that organisation's new postal bank."
November 25, 2005 -- Kyodo has reported that "The European Union expressed concern Friday over some aspects of the revisions to Japan's corporate law and the implications that privatizing the country's postal services may have on European banks and insurance companies operating in Japan, Japanese and EU officials said."
November 25, 2005 -- The Daily Post has noted that "a furious MP last night demanded the Royal Mail be stripped of its power to issue stamps if it continues to snub Wales."
November 25, 2005 -- According to the Asbury Park Press, "A plan to shift mail handling from the U.S. Postal Service's West Eatontown Processing and Distribution Center to Edison and Trenton will either save money and speed delivery or slow it down and cost more, depending on who is asked. Postal workers demonstrated in Red Bank on Monday to alert the public of the move, which postal officials said has already started and should be completed by spring."
November 25, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported:
The European Commission has as expected given the go ahead for Deutsche Post World Net to takeover UK based logistics provider Exel. This marks the last major hurdle to the completion of the deal which should now proceed by the end of the year.
Royal Mail Group, owner of Parcelforce and GLS is streamlining its four businesses, presumably before the UK postal market is fully liberalised in January.
Germany is looking to try and reduce its budget deficit, with a 54 billion sell off of state owned companies
It is being reported that DHL is facing more problems in the US market due to implementation challenges at new facilities. The peak volumes which will occur in the run up to Christmas will test how far the company has been able to turnaround its express parcels operations in the country.
November 25, 2005 -- Here's an interesting piece from the National Association of Major Mail Users (NAMMU) to its mail-using members in Canada:
"Some high density Lettermail users are still scratching their heads following the news product strategy and specs for 2006 will not change, despite the clear signal given last year that mailers would be provided a new sort option to evaluate by January 2006. So what s happening? The lack of clarity and the one-sided rationale for rate increases, product spec changes, imposition of new work processes at will, the formulaic responses from government and Canada Post on the lack of involvement by business stakeholders in the forward planning and change process, still confound the mailing industry. Positive steps are being taken through the JUST SAY NO program and Impact 2006 Forums, to address with Canada Post and government the imbalance in the current business model."
November 25, 2005 -- FinFacts has reported that "Management at An Post has accepted the Labour Court's recommendation on the dispute at the company. The Communications Workers Union has agreed to recommend that its members accept the terms of the Labour Court proposal which calls on the company to pay overdue national wage agreement increases." See also RTE News.
November 25, 2005 -- The Business Standard has reported that "The proposed Indian Post Office (Amendment) Bill may spoil the party of India's Rs 3,000-crore express cargo industry. The Bill, which is slated for consideration in Parliament early next year, has recommended the creation of a postal board to regulate functioning of express cargo companies, with penal provisions and price-fixing powers. Sources said the Bill proposed to fix delivery charges of a courier company at a certain multiple of that for Indian Post, which might make the functioning of courier companies unviable."
November 24, 2005 -- According to The Register, "People responding to a promo run by delivery firm DHL were bombarded with a deluge of hundreds of emails this week. Firms responding to an offer of a free Blackberry in return for opening up an account with the packet delivery outfit were subjected to a packet storm because of flaws with some of the recipients' email systems, triggered by DHL's misguided decision to send out a message to 1,000 people directly instead of as blind carbon copies. An email sent out to the list generated a message storm. Glitches in email systems of three of the recipients generated a blitz of replicated emails."
November 24, 2005 -- According to Traffic World, "DHL, the world's leading express delivery and logistics company and the Official Express Delivery and Logistics Provider of Major League Baseball, today announced a three-year sponsorship agreement with the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum that names DHL the "Official Express Delivery and Logistics Provider of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum." As part of the partnership, DHL will provide the Hall of Fame with a comprehensive range of services to meet its express shipping and logistics needs. In addition, DHL will support the Hall of Fame with special deliveries to its headquarters in Cooperstown, NY throughout the year, ensuring that artifacts of historical relevance to the sport find a new home at the Hall of Fame."
November 24, 2005 -- The Connection has reported that "Normandie Farm owner Cary Prokos has spent nearly two years working to get county approval for a zoning change that will let him build a banquet hall on his restaurant property. Operating a restaurant means complying with strict zoning regulations, liquor control laws and food service standards. Prokos has contacted county leaders and federal legislators to complain about the William F. Bolger Center at the corner of Democracy Boulevard and Newbridge Drive, a United States Postal Service training facility that has opened its food and lodging services to the general public. "They have come out competing and making their own rules," Prokos said. "These guys have blatant and reckless disregard for all of our laws. They're just doing whatever they want to do there. They need to cease all operations open to the general public immediately. That's my position." Thanks to PostalNews.com for bringing this one to our attention.
November 24, 2005 -- The Postal Service has posted its October financials on its web site.
November 24, 2005 -- According to the Federal Times, "The American Postal Workers Union is gearing up to frustrate U.S. Postal Service plans to consolidate first-class mail processing operations at nine plants, most of them on the East and West coasts."
November 24, 2005 -- To enhance competition, ensure quality performance, shorten purchase lead-time, and to obtain the best value for our purchasing dollars, the Postal Service has opted to pre-qualify suppliers in the acquisition of relocation management services. Pre-qualified suppliers are those whose record of performance in the marketplace has demonstrated their ability to perform to consistently high standards of quality and reliability through a successful record of past performance. Quality may be demonstrated by previously providing high quality services and by maintaining a documented quality system. Reliability may be demonstrated through reference checks of current accounts.
November 24, 2005 -- Computing has reported that "The Post Office is implementing profitability analysis software to improve how it measures the effectiveness of new products and services. The company will start using the Predictive Planning tool from performance optimisation specialist ALG Software in January, largely to handle its diversification into the financial services sector."
November 24, 2005 -- As PublicFinance.co.uk has noted, "Royal Mail could be forced into bankruptcy by spiralling pension deficits that could reach ·6.25bn next year, chair Allan Leighton has warned. Leighton made the alarming admission shortly after reporting a 20.5% increase in operating profits, to ·159m, for the six-month period to September. The government-owned company has called on its sole shareholder to invest an extra ·2bn. Leighton has also asked for the strict price limits imposed on it by Postcomm, the industry regulator, to be loosened so that the firm can ride out cost increases. RM would like to raise stamp prices, for example, to cover increased costs."
November 24, 2005 -- Unison.ie has reported that "An Post's board of directors is due to meet today to discuss the latest Labour Court recommendation aimed at averting strike action at the company." See also Sunday Business Post.
November 24, 2005 -- The latest issue of the PostCom Bulletin is available online. In this issue:
Hey! You've not been getting the weekly PostCom Bulletin--the best postal newsletter anywhere...bar none? Send us by email your name, company, company title, postal and email address. Get a chance to see what you've been missing.
November 24, 2005 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal), published by the MRU Consultancy, has reported that:
An increase in operating result accompanied by a decrease in mail volume are the characteristics of the British Royal Mail's first half 2005. GLS is now Royal Mail's second biggest profit generator after the mail segment.
Surprise move on the Swedish mail market: the share price for private mail service Optimail AB was suspended after Posten Norge made an offer for the Swedish company.Apparently, the main shareholders are willing to accept the offer unless a better offer is received from elsewhere.
Schweizerische Post is faced with two new competitors. Geneva-based Aramex and Time Service have both been granted a postal licence on condition that they pay strict respect to the existing monopoly.
Posten Norge is way ahead of its fellow post companies in Scandinavia in terms of productivity. The high productivity of the Norwegian workers - surpassed only by the Dutch and the Germans on an international level - comes as no surprise. Posten Norge has presented continuous two-digit growth rates in the area since 1998 based not only on a high level of automation and organisation but also on a very turnover-oriented product policy.
Last week the Dutch government again emphasised that the market opening scheduled for 2007 would depend on simultaneous moves in Britain and Germany.
The Austrian Lagermax Gruppe is able to expand its position on the Eastern European express market further. From 1 December, the Czech Lagermax spedice a logistika s.r.o. will join the express network 24plus as a system partner. Lagermax (243m euros in turnover) has for years operated four joint ventures with the French GeoPost in Hungary (CEP News 33/03), Croatia (CEP News 04/04), Slovenia (CEP News 33/04) and Bosnia-Herzegovina (CEP News 02/05) as franchise partners of European parcel network DPD. Lagermax is also present in Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia-Montenegro, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.
The MRU, founded in 1992, is the only consultancy in Europe, which has specialised in the market of courier-, express- and parcel services. For large-scale shippers and CEP-services in particular, the MRU provides interdisciplinary advice for all major questions of the market, as there are for example market entry, product design, organisation, and EDP.To learn more about the stories reported above, contact CEP News.
November 24, 2005 -- The U.S. Postal Service has announced that "New rate files in comma-delimited format are now available on usps.com/ratecase. These files are also available on Postal Explorer at pe.usps.com by clicking on Rate Case Information÷ in the left frame."
November 24, 2005 -- The Board of Governors of the U.S. Postal Service will meet in Washington, DC, at Postal Service Headquarters, 475 L'Enfant Plaza, SW, on December 6, 2005.
November 24, 2005 -- The DM Bulletin has reported that "Royal Mail has appointed Ian Griffiths, group managing director of car parts firm GKN Automotive, as managing director of its letters business. "
November 23, 2005 -- From the Federal Register:
November 23, 2005 -- Personnel Today has reported that "Royal Mail s hopes of giving shares to its employees appear to have been dashed after it emerged that the Conservative Party has expressed misgivings about backing the necessary legislation. If the Tories oppose the plans, defeat in the House of Commons appears inevitable because of the huge opposition to the plan from Labour backbenchers."
November 23, 2005 -- Die Welt has reported that "Deutsche Post, the German postal service operator, has announced that it will restructure its network of outlets by closing up to 200 of its own post offices and by converting them into postal agencies based at retail outlets. Management highlights that the restructuring will not entail redundancies."
November 23, 2005 -- Business World has reported that "The Communications Workers Union has called off its threat of industrial action in the postal service. It has made the move as a result of a recommendation last night from the Labour Court aimed at settling the labour trouble at An Post. The Court's 10 page proposal, issued just after seven o'clock last night, calls on the company to pay the overdue wage rises due to workers under the Sustaining Progress Agreement. It also deals with a range of work practice changes. Crucially, however, it attaches no conditions to the payment of the wage increases." See also Online.ie and the Irish Independent.
November 23, 2005 -- WQAD.com has reported that "Letter carriers will begin delivering fliers in the East St. Louis area in an effort to help find a missing four-year-old boy and his 19-year-old pregnant cousin." See also the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
November 23, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has noted that "DHL has developed a customized internet solution for Airbus in Germany for the management of parcels for in excess of 4,000 suppliers. The collection of up to 31.5kg items is now able to be ordered via a special logistics portal. Whilst suppliers benefit from the simplified shipment preparation, the aircraft manufacturer receives a better overview of the incoming goods and accounting procedures are streamlined."
November 23, 2005 -- Th e Newspaper Association of America has reported that "Advertising expenditures for newspapers and their Web sites totaled $12 billion for the third quarter of 2005, a 2.4 percent year-over-year increase, according to preliminary estimates from the Newspaper Association of America. Spending for print ads in newspapers totaled $11.4 billion, up 1.6 percent versus the same period a year earlier, while ad spending online continued its double-digit growth in the third quarter, increasing by 26.7 percent from the same period a year ago to $518.9 million."
November 23, 2005 -- The American Postal Workers Union has reported that "A U.S. Appeals Court has granted a Postal Service petition for a rehearing in a landmark court decision that invalidated return-to-work requirements for employees with absences of more than 21 days. The appeals court action vacates the July 19, 2005, ruling that had been hailed as a major victory in the fight to preserve workers rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)."
November 23, 2005 -- RJR94FM.com has reported that "The Postal Corporation of Jamaica is searching for ways to ensure more efficient delivery of express mail to the United States. The Postal Corporation is also putting in a computer based tracking system to enable it to track all its priority and express mail as they move overseas." See also Radio Jamaica.
November 23, 2005 -- From PR Newswire:
Zazzle (http://www.zazzle.com) today announced that they will be the first to offer customers the option to purchase custom postage with the new postage rates, which will be in effect on January 8, 2006. ZazzleStamps are real U.S. postage that customers can create with digital images (their own and others offered by Zazzle) and customize with borders and text. Customers can also support their favorite charity by purchasing postage created by their favorite charity, as Zazzle donates 17% of the proceeds on those purchases.
Symbol Technologies, Inc. has announced that Russian Post has selected Symbol's DS6608 two-dimensional (2D) bar code digital scanner, as part of its Point of Sale terminal upgrade project. The project is aimed to increase customer service efficiency by providing new standards and procedures that will accelerate operational business processes and reduce customer wait time in the Post Office. Symbol DS6608 digital imaging scanners will be installed in 6,000 Russian Post Offices located throughout Russia. Russian Post is deploying the digital scanners in order to improve its 'Express Money Order' service. Originating in December 1998, the service is used for accepting money orders from legal and physical entities in real-time across 54 regions in Russia, and then transmitting the information to banks through transaction centers.
November 23, 2005 -- The Asahi Shimbun has reported that "Tokyo police on Tuesday arrested three people who they said cheated post offices out of almost 14 million yen by cashing bogus international money orders. The forgeries are all copies of United States Postal Service (USPS) international postal money orders."
November 22, 2005 -- Les Echos has reported that:
November 22, 2005 -- The Business Standard has reported that "The finance ministry will no longer offer special rates to the department of posts for deposits under the Postal Life Insurance Fund and the Rural Postal Life Insurance Fund. The move will result in lower returns on investment for policy holders as the DoP will not be able to sustain its current interest and bonus rates, which are higher than market rates."
November 22, 2005 -- According to NewIndPress, "The Army Postal Service (APS) is virtually the heartline for service personnel who have been posted far away from civilisation and their families. It ensures that the handwritten paper envelope or the money order reaches the correct hands creating a permanent bond between the sender and receiver whether they are in the icy Himalayas or the Gangetic plain."
November 22, 2005 -- The USPS has made available to vendors and developers a ZIP file which contains the final version of the postage statements which will go into affect on January 8, 2006, and a spreadsheet which details what changes were made to the forms since the USPS sent them to developers in the fall.
November 22, 2005 -- Internet shoppers say the successful delivery of goods purchased online is critical to their overall satisfaction and loyalty to online retailers, according to a new survey commissioned by UPS. The survey, conducted for UPS by the national opinion research firm Synovate, found online consumers were overwhelming in their demand for high-quality delivery services.
November 22, 2005 -- Business Week has reported that "A Tokyo-based U.S. business lobby urged the Japanese government Tuesday to ensure Japan Post operates on equal footing with domestic and foreign financial institutions after privatization. Robert Grondine, chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan, said unless the postal giant competes on a level field with other private companies, there could be problems down the line."
November 22, 2005 -- According to The Scotsman, "THE Royal Mail has been urged to speed up improvement in the service it offers to customers in Edinburgh, after figures showed it still has one of the poorest delivery records for first-class mail in Scotland."
November 22, 2005 -- As Digital Lifestyles has noted, "The Internet was supposed to herald in an age of paperless offices, online browsing and tree-untroubling electronic mail, but it seems that when it comes to flogging goods, the trusty old print catalogue still rules the roost. According to new research from the Royal Mail, online retailers will be looking to stuff your letterbox full of paper catalogues before Christmas in an attempt to drive up sales over the festive season."
November 22, 2005 -- The Wall Street Journal has noted that "This season, several greeting-card companies are trying to fight the perception that a paper card that is signed, sealed, and delivered from the Web is less personal than a handwritten one. They say they've got the best of both worlds -- the convenience of the Internet without the impersonalization often associated with email greeting cards. The efforts come as the process of sending out holiday cards has grown increasingly tedious to a culture used to dashing off emails or making a quick phone call." Skip the middle man. Say "Merry Christmas" from your Blackberry. It's the "fair and equitable" thing to do.
November 22, 2005 -- Japan Today has noted that "Japan Post said Monday it booked a net profit of 998.4 billion yen in the April-September first half of fiscal 2005, up 2.77-fold from the year before, due to higher stock prices and cost reductions. The profit at the public corporation for postal services is 1.75 times larger than Toyota Motor Corp's group net profit of 570.5 billion yen in the same period."
November 22, 2005 -- The Albuquerque Journal has reported that "Political pressure is mounting in Rio Rancho's push for a new post office. Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., wants to sit down with the postmaster general to talk about an additional post office for Rio Rancho. In a strongly worded letter Friday, Domenici said Rio Rancho's single post office can't keep up with demand in the growing city."
November 22, 2005 -- The Mirror has reported that "TWO greedy bosses of a delivery firm which dumped millions of items of mail in Britain's biggest-ever postal scandal were yesterday jailed for two years. Police believe Inderpal Narula, 33, and Royston Heaton, 42, netted at least ·3.2million as their company dumped 2,700 kilos of post daily over a year. Their firm Mail Logistics had a contract with Royal Mail to deliver post abroad. But undercover investigators watched in astonishment as the firm's forklift truck driver ditched the mail in skips." See also The Times.
November 22, 2005 -- According to RTE News, "The Labour Court is to issue a recommendation today aimed at bringing the long running dispute at An Post to an end."
November 22, 2005 -- According to Union Network International (UNI), "In March 2005, the former right-wing government in Norway got a majority in Parliament to vote in favour of its proposal to end the monopoly to distribute letters by 2007. The Labour Party, the Socialistic Party and the Centre Party voted against and published a joint statement declaring that they are in agreement to stop postal liberalisation in Norway and maintain the monopoly of the universal postal service in the country, if they would win the next general election. The three parties if winning would form a coalition government. At the general elections in September 2005 the three parties actually won the elections, formed government and the former government's deregulation plans for Norwegian Post has been put aside."
November 22, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has noted that "DHL s express operations in the US seem to have hit further problems. Following the integration of Airborne Express into DHL s US network, customer service deteriorated to such an extent that management subsequently stated that it was losing credibility and incurring substantial costs in service recovery. Now, though, implementation of service at new facilities has created more problems, according to various sources. Morgan Stanley, the investment bank, has reported in a briefing note that a number of shippers have complained about service levels following the opening of a new hub in California. On time delivery levels had in some cases fallen allegedly to around 55%. With the holiday season rapidly approaching, DHL will be hoping that these problems are merely growing pains. The company s high profile entry into the US market, bringing it into direct competition with both UPS and FedEx, has meant that its performance has been under considerable scrutiny over the last two years. More recently the turnaround of the business has gone well, but the real test will come in the next few weeks as its operation has to deal with peak volumes. The pressure will be on management to prove that it is a real alternative to the market leaders, UPS and FedEx."
November 22, 2005 -- DM News has reported that "The U.S. transportation industry will have another strong year in 2006, paced by gains in the trucking sector, according to The Colography Group Inc. in its annual projections for the $98 billion U.S. expedited cargo market. The domestic air market will be muted, with shipment volumes rising next year by only 1.2 percent over 2005. The U.S. air export category, however, is expected to climb 7.3 percent in year-over-year shipment levels. Overnight letter shipping is projected to see a 0.6 percent decline because of e-mail and the migration of airfreight traffic to surface transport. Ground parcel and the less-than-truckload categories are expected to show shipment growth of 5.1 percent and 3.8 percent, respectively."
November 22, 2005 -- According to Business Week, "Drivers are suing to protest their status as contractors -- and gaining traction."
November 22, 2005 -- From the PR Newswire: "U.S. Postal Service international shipping labels can now be printed from eBay's website. "This means the best products, the best service, and the best value are now just a click away for eBay's international shippers," said Nick Barranca, Vice President of the Postal Service's Product Development group."
November 22, 2005 -- More in the Federal Times on the USPS' response to the Hallmark amendment concerning postal rates.
November 22, 2005 -- The Financial Express has reported that "'Express' courier operators are seeking an independent regulatory authority to regulate the written communications sector. This follows a move by the government to entrust the Department of Posts to register operators carrying out functions of collection, transmission and delivery of documents and parcels through a proposed amendment."
November 22, 2005 -- Pacific Magazine has reported that "More than 25 tons of US mail destined for the Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia has been stuck with the PM&O shipping line since July. The balance of the mail is to be shipped to Majuro on the next Matson barge, which is scheduled to arrive on the December 14th, nearly five months after schedule."
November 22, 2005 -- NBC4.com has reported that "Some D.C. postal workers upset about working conditions at one mail facility have had their complaints answered. D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton toured their postal facility, and she examined some new equipment that workers say the building desperately needed."
November 22, 2005 -- According to its executive director, Richard Miller, the International Mailers Advisory Group (IMAG) has been reorganized as a nonprofit association. Joe Schick, Director of Postal Affairs, QuadGraphics, was elected Chairman. Formed in 1997 as an international advisory group to the USPS, the membership comprised of large US outbound mailers and vendors - has been active in a number of cross-border issues. IMAG is the only trade organization in the country devoted specifically to the concerns of the international mailing industry. It is a founding member of the new Consultative Committee of the Universal Postal Union and has been directly involved in international address standards and other cross-border initiatives. The group works closely with the US Department of State and the World Customs Organization, consults with the USPS on product pricing and development and represents the international mailing industry at major domestic and international fora.
November 21, 2005 -- LeGree Daniels, a member of the USPS Board of Governors, had died.
November 21, 2005 -- Cambridge Evening News has reported that "ROYAL Mail performance in the East of England has improved dramatically, new figures reveal. The first six months of this financial year were characterised by significant improvements on last year's performance levels."
November 21, 2005 -- Unison.ie has reported that "The Labour Court is reportedly due to issue a recommendation in the dispute over pay increases at An Post tomorrow. Reports this morning said no agreement was reached during discussions with both sides over the weekend."
November 21, 2005 -- The Herald has reported that "Fame and influence haven't exactly been a part of the life of Primitivo Rodr guez, but now the social activist is putting his stamp on the world. The beaming face of this longtime rights activist and current adviser to the Federal Electoral Institute now adorns an unofficial United States postage stamp. In August, Ra l Ross, a Chicagoan who fought alongside Rodr guez to secure the right for Mexicans abroad to vote in Mexico, persuaded a private vendor authorized by the U.S. Postal Service to print 1,000 customized stamps featuring his colleague's face. The new stamp is part of an effort by immigrants in the United States to publicize the vote among expatriates, who will be allowed to vote by mail-in ballot. Organizers also hope it will ease mistrust between immigrants and Mexico's post office."
November 21, 2005 -- Forbes has reported that "Norway's state-owned postal service, Norway Post, on Monday announced an agreement to buy Sweden's Frigoscandia, a regional supplier of temperature-controlled transport of food and other products."
November 21, 2005 -- According to DM News, "Postal rates haven't gone up yet, but mailers are already preparing for the next rate case. Many say it will be filed in the spring and implemented in 2007."
November 21, 2005 -- According to Transport Intelligence, "It has been reported that DHL has acquired a 20-year lease on an office block based in New York, in a deal worth in excess of $181m. The seven-story building is next to the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel, allowing it good links with the immediate vicinity for parcels shipments. DHL will be able to move its headquarters to the building by the spring of 2006. Commentators believe that the company will also benefit from a greater marketing presence in the area which includes Manhattan."
November 20, 2005 -- The Mail has reported that "THE future of Royal Mail has been secured after the Government agreed to inject ·2 billion into the insolvent organisation. And for the first time in its 300-year history, workers are to be given a stake in the business. Financial Mail understands that the Government will 'gift' 20 per cent of the value of the business to its 200,000 workers. Each employee will be given shares worth between ·4,000 and ·5,000. After months of tough bargaining, Chancellor Gordon Brown has approved a deal to to pay ·2bn to subscribe for new shares in Royal Mail. The money will be used partly to plug a ·4.5bn pension fund deficit."
November 20, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "A minister has moved to allay Labour MPs' fears that the government might stage a back-door privatisation of Royal Mail, telling them it will not renege on a manifesto pledge to keep the postal operator in public hands. Opposition to any change in ownership has grown. Nick Brown, a former cabinet minister and an ex-party whip, added his name to a Commons motion on the issue yesterday, taking the number of Labour signatories to 185, more than half the parliamentary party."
November 20, 2005 -- The Sunday Business Post has reported that "The Irish Postmasters' Union has highlighted what it claims is the crisis in the post office network. With 400 post offices having closed in recent years and more set to close, the days of the rural post office look to be numbered. General Secretary of the Irish Postmasters' Union, John Kane says action is needed if the postal network is to survive. If the network is not tackled in terms of someone putting the parts right very quickly, the network will disappear in the next five or ten years÷, said Mr Kane We feel the local post offices are an integral part of the social fabric of the community and in our view it s important and that it be preserved and indeed strengthened. But unfortunately the opposite is happening÷, he added." See also the Irish Examiner.
November 19, 2005 -- Ha'aretz has reported that "An agreement turning the Israel Postal Authority to a company has been recently drafted, as part of a general move to open the postal market to competition starting on January 31, 2006. Finance Minister Ehud Olmert said Saturday that opening the postal market to competition is part of the reforms the treasury had led in recent years for increasing competition in the Israeli market, with the intention of widening the variety of services offered to consumers, improving service quality and lowering service prices. "Competition will be better for Israelis and will widen the variety of products provided by the post service," Olmert said." See also the International Herald Tribune.
November 19, 2005 -- According to Lexington Institute fellow Sam Ryan writing in the Arizona Daily Star, "The Postal Service's captive consumers will soon pay more to mail a letter. The USPS has officially approved a 5.4 percent rate increase, which will take effect on Jan. 8. That will push the cost of a stamp to 39 cents. Unfortunately, this increase ignores Aunt Minnie, the ordinary consumer. Forty-six parties participated in this rate case. But only the Office of the Consumer Advocate represented ordinary consumers. And far from supporting the rate increase, the OCA voiced sharp criticism."
November 19, 2005 -- Ireland Online has reported that "Intensive talks aimed at averting possible postal disruption in the run up to Christmas are to continue later this morning. Union and management representatives have both indicated that deliveries will be hit if the latest round of conciliation talks fail to deliver on a deal."
November 18, 2005 -- The latest issue of the PostCom Bulletin is available online. In this issue:
Hey! You've not been getting the weekly PostCom Bulletin--the best postal newsletter anywhere...bar none? Send us by email your name, company, company title, postal and email address. Get a chance to see what you've been missing.
November 18, 2005 -- The latest copy of the National Association of Postmasters of the U.S. electronic governmental affairs newsletter is available on the NAPUS web site.
November 18, 2005 -- Les Echos has reported that "La Poste, the French postal service operator, has been fined 1m euros by the competition authorities. The reason for this is that the company had charged prices that benefited certain customers and its subsidiary Datapost, which specialises in sorting and mailing."
November 18, 2005 -- The Boston Globe has reported that "It's taking at least an hour longer than normal to get out the door these days at the central mail distribution center, where postal carriers, thigh-deep in holiday catalogs, sort and pack their loads before hitting the streets. Bundles stuffed with catalogs teeter on crates and carriages. Piles are stacked upon piles. The sheer volume has even veteran employees shaking their heads. Ed Kosta, 47, who walks much of his 234-house route in Melrose, delivered about 800 catalogs yesterday. ''People sometimes complain about all the catalogs they receive, but they will also question when they don't get their catalogs," he said. The phenomenal growth of Internet shopping has not cut the volume of glossy ads, as many analysts once predicted. Quite the contrary. It turns out that online retailing and catalog mailing have developed a symbiotic relationship: A catalog in the mailbox often compels consumers to go to their computers, marketing specialists say."
November 18, 2005 -- The Association for Postal Commerce welcomes its newest member:
Buhrs-Americas represented by Gary Harris.
November 18, 2005 -- Noticias.info has reported that "Reporters Without Borders today condemned a decision by the state postal service, Belposhta, to stop delivering seven independent newspapers to subscribers on 1 January. Earlier this month, Belposhta had announced its intention to terminate its contracts with three other privately-owned publications at the start of next year. In an interview for Radio Free Europe, Nasha Niva editor Andrey Dynko described the postal service s refusal to continue delivering the newspapers as a crime against Belarusian culture and as yet further evidence that the conditions do not exist for free elections to be held."
November 18, 2005 -- From the U.S. Postal Service: "New Rates and Fees tables in HTML and PDF formats for the price change effective January 8, 2006, are now available on usps.com/ratecase. These tables are also available on Postal Explorer at pe.usps.com. You can also link to the new Ratefold (Notice 123).
November 18, 2005 -- UPS has announced new 2006 rates for most U.S. small package services, including a 3.9 percent increase in commercial ground services and a 5.5 percent rise in UPS air and international services. The company also will reduce by 2 percent the index used to determine its air fuel surcharge, a move that will directly benefit customers as fuel prices moderate and the index pushes the air fuel surcharge below the current 12.5 percent cap. UPS is maintaining this cap despite dramatic jet fuel price increases. UPS remains the only express package delivery company to limit its surcharge to a maximum 12.5 percent in an industry where competitors currently are charging 20 percent or more.
November 18, 2005 -- According to FirstLogic's Chris Lien, "The United States Postal Service½ recently published its 2006 to 2010 Transformation Plan and in it they call for a 50 percent reduction of this UAA mail by 2010. While that may sound like a huge goal, I believe it is a very achievable. There are more tools widely available and recognized best practices in data quality today than there were in 1998 when the USPS½ did their cost study showing UAA cost them $2.1 billion. It's that application of those tools, though, that I think makes all the difference."
November 18, 2005 -- From the PR Newswire: "The Independent Pilots Association has given UPS until December 23 to finalize the contract it began negotiating with its pilots in October 2002."
November 18, 2005 -- As American Postal Workers Union president William Burrus has told his members, "The long-expected USPS network consolidation has begun in bits and pieces, with individual offices now being notified of changes to their mail processing operations. Over the past several weeks the union has received notification from the USPS of the planned consolidation of some operations÷ at 10 offices one week, followed by a dozen more the following week. Despite numerous discussions and our repeated requests over the two-year period of the contract extension, the USPS never presented a consolidation plan. Management finally acknowledged that it had abandoned the concept of a national plan and that future consolidation efforts would be directed at Area-wide efficiencies.÷ It is now clear that USPS management plans to alter the national network through a series of piecemeal changes. It is expected that in the coming months the Postal Service will inform the union of additional offices identified for change. "
November 18, 2005 -- The Greensboro News-Record has noted that "Add one more thing for local charities to deal with -- an increase in postal rates. While postage going up won't cripple charities, it's just another hurdle for them to face as they squeeze tight budgets. For some, mailings are an important fund-raising tool."
November 18, 2005 -- PostCom SALUTES St. Peterburg Times writer NANCY PARADIS, who wrote a response that was "dead-on" to a reader complaining about direct mail."
November 17, 2005 -- According to PostalWatch.org, "Postal officials continually claim that they have increased productivity and cut expenses by some $5 billion over the passed few years. Nothing could be further from the truth. The agency uses its own homegrown Total Factor Productivity (TFP) formula to claim steady improvement in productivity since 2001. However, the more generally accepted measurement of productivity shows far different results. For example, this more common method, which divides revenues by compensation expenses, shows productivity has actually decreased by 2.3% since August of 2004."
November 17, 2005 -- 4NI has reported that "Royal Mail has reported a rise in profits, despite a seeing a fall in earnings in its letter business. The group reported a 20.5% increase in operating profit to ·159 million for the first half of 2005/06 a ·27 million improvement on the same period the previous year. However, the Royal Mail s letters business, which accounts for around 76% of the group s revenue, made an operating profit of ·168 million a decrease of 3% on last year s figures. The fall came despite a below-inflation 1.8% overall rise in postage prices at the beginning of April." See also The Herald.
November 17, 2005 -- The DM Bulletin has reported that "Royal Mail has axed the role of Post Office chief executive David Mills and is restructuring its management in an attempt to fend off competition from rival postal operators. The company said that it will shortly announce the appointment of two new managing directors -- for the Post Office and Royal Mail Letters. While the Post Office was overseen by Mills, Royal Mail Letters fell under the jurisdiction of Adam Crozier, the group chief executive. Crozier will hand over control of the division to the new appointee, while Mills plans to leave the business at the end of this year."
November 17, 2005 -- ThisIsMoney has reported that "THE Royal Mail could be bankrupted by its massive pension fund deficit, chairman Allan Leighton warned this afternoon. As he unveiled a huge rise in profits he warned that the company had no way of filling a ·4bn pound hole in its pension fund without government help. The business, which has axed 33,000 jobs and outsourced some operations to return to profit, warned it could be bankrupted by claims on its pension fund which it said has more members than any other company scheme in Britain." See also The Guardian, The Times, and The Independent.
November 17, 2005 -- Ireland Online has reported that "A Government trouble-shooter tonight requested Labour Court involvement in the long-running bid to end the dispute in the postal services. The National Implementation Body (NIB) said during intensive talks with both An Post management and the Communications Workers Union it had become aware of significant differences of understanding."
November 17, 2005 -- Traffic World has reported that "Xpressdocs, a Fort Worth,Texas-based marketing company, said it is shifting all its shipping needs to DHL to FedEx, citing DHL service delays."
November 17, 2005 -- According to the New Zealand Herald, "Advertisers are often missing the mark when it comes to how consumers like their advertising delivered, a new study shows. The Colmar Brunton study, commissioned by New Zealand Post, found 49 per cent of consumers rated television their favourite medium for receiving brand advertising. Newspapers came in second with 19 per cent of consumers judging it their favourite medium for brand messages, and unaddressed mail was favoured by 12 per cent."
November 17, 2005 -- UNI has reported that "As business ethics are coming under growing scrutiny, corporate social responsibility (CSR) has emerged as a burning issue for CEO's and managers throughout the postal industry. The first European Postal Conference on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) was organised in Rome on 27 and 28 October 2005 by the Social Dialogue Committee (SDC) in the postal sector which operates under the umbrella of PostEurop, and UNI Postal and it was hosted by Poste Italiane. A high number of employer and Trade Union representatives from 24 EU Member States participated in this event, organised with the financial support of the European Commission. Representatives of EU candidate countries also took part in the workshop."
November 17, 2005 -- The Sunday Business Post has reported that "Minister for Communications Noel Dempsey has expressed optimism about the prospects for a resolution of the An Post dispute. Mr Dempsey said today that he was confident CWU and An Post could resolve their differences and avert serious postal disruption in the run-up to Christmas."
November 17, 2005 -- From the U.S. Postal Service:
Plant-Verified Drop Shipment. Plant-verified drop shipment (PVDS) mailings will be verified and accepted by Postal Service employees as follows: PVDS mailings verified and paid for before January 8, 2006, will be accepted into the mailstream at destination entry postal facilities through January 23, 2006, if presented with appropriate documentation of verification and payment (PS Form 8125, Plant-Verified Drop Shipment (PVDS) Verification and Clearance). PVDS mailings may be verified and paid for beginning December 8, 2005, under the rates that take effect January 8, 2006, provided the shipments are not deposited at destination entry postal facilities until January 8, 2006, or later.
November 17, 2005 -- Asia Pulse has reported that "Japan Post has announced that it will revise its fee structure for wire transfer and payment services next April, raising charges on in-person transactions at post office branches in an effort to promote ATM use."
November 17, 2005 -- The CBC has reported that "Postal workers have begun to return approximately 75,000 pieces of undelivered mail to people in the Park Extension neighbourhood of Montreal. A letter carrier was arrested for stealing the mail and hoarding it in his apartment and cottage."
November 17, 2005 -- As the Washington Post has noted, "The clock ran out on revamping the U.S. Postal Service in 2004, and it looks like the clock could run out again this year. Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Thomas R. Carper (D-Del.), chief sponsors of a bill that would overhaul Postal Service business operations, announced yesterday that postal officials support a key provision in their bill."
November 17, 2005 -- Gibbons Stamp Monthly has reported that "50 years ago, Australia acquired ownership of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Australian stamps were brought into use and philatelic interest in the tiny group of islands was boosted. Richard Breckon discusses the early years of Australia s philatelic administration."
November 17, 2005 -- The Oklahoma Daily has reported that "The 35-year relationship between OU and training operations of the U.S. Postal Service could end some time in the next week. Richard Little, associate vice president for the University Outreach organization at OU s College of Continuing Education, said the future of the contract between the U.S. Postal Service and OCCE would be decided some time late this week or early next week. The contract initially awarded $9 million over two years to OCCE for a potential $45 million contract over the full 10 years. Over the past 10 years, the award ballooned to $78 million, due to the increasing scope of the NCED s mission."
November 17, 2005 -- The Asahi Shimbun has reported that "The steadily diversifying Japan Post will expand its business scope yet again with a joint venture in delivery of corporate documents. Its partner will be a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corp., which already provides similar services. The public postal corporation will compete for the service with Yamato Transport Co. and other distribution companies, which are aggressively expanding delivery of corporate documents."
November 17, 2005 -- As the Associated Press has noted, "Passenger airline pilots aren't the only ones feuding with their managements these days over new contract terms. Cargo airline pilots are, too. The disputes at shipping giants UPS Inc. and FedEx Corp., however, don't involve pay cuts, as both companies are offering wage increases. Beyond pay, these pilots say their benefits and work rules are just as important if not more important to fight for."
November 17, 2005 -- According to the Hattiesburg American, both UPS and Fedex are still fighting their Hurricane Katrina backlog. It said that "While private carriers are experiencing delivery problems, that's not the case with the U.S. Postal Service."
November 17, 2005 -- Here's an old name for you....The PR Web has a piece announcing that "Blueprint Technologies, Inc., an enterprise modernization firm, today announced that Norman Lorentz has been appointed its Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. Mr. Lorentz brings more than 30 years of public sector and commercial technology management expertise to Blueprint, and will play an instrumental role in helping the company plan for its next phase of growth in response to increasing market demand for EA solutions at both the federal and commercial level."
November 17, 2005 -- Gamasutra has reported that "A new set of stamps has been issued by La Poste, the French postal service, featuring images of several beloved video game icons. The set of 10 stamps, which retail collectively for 2.65 euros ($3.09 USD), is already available in French post offices and through La Poste's website."
November 17, 2005 -- According to Traffic World, "Unionized UPS pilots will begin informational picketing in front of UPS Stores across the country."
November 17, 2005 -- As a recent Research and Markets report has noted, "RFID is an idea whose time has come in postal, courier and high volume light logistics. In the past, RFID has been used for little more than the evaluation of postal performance, using tags in a small percentage of letters, and the tracking of a small number of conveyances and vehicles. No longer. From DHL taking bids for RFID labels on one billion packages to Saudi Post tagging postal boxes, the big innovations are now happening. There is even a postal RFID system that completely automates the whole process of mail delivery from accepting the package to classification and dispatching. It has been successfully tested in Korea this year. For a complete index of this report click on http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c27931."
November 17, 2005 -- From MarketWire: "eFunds Corporation, a leading provider of risk management, electronic payments and global outsourcing solutions, announced today that it will provide payment processing switching services, debit gateway processing and back office solutions to the United States Postal Service (USPS). This new solution, which follows a previous software agreement signed in 2004, will be delivered through facilities management and debit gateway processing agreements that provide a flexible hybrid of in-house software and outsourced payment services. With the new agreement in place, the eFunds solution will drive transaction processing at more than 34,000 USPS locations and 65,000 point-of-sale (POS) devices nationwide once fully implemented. Other payments channels including the USPS' eCommerce business and its 2,500 Automated Postal Center (APC) self-serve kiosks will also be supported under this agreement."
November 17, 2005 -- Remember PostMag? Well the editor, David Rawnsley, has reappeared in a role to help the African posts find funding for their projects. He tells me that they will have a new website up and running soon devoted to this subject. He will be providing his insightful commentary on how our industry is doing in helping out the many poor people in Africa who have no means of communication. You can find details of this initiative at the website of one of his partners Anabus www.anabus.com.
November 17, 2005 -- The New York Times has reported that former postmaster general Preston Robert Tisch has died of a brain tumor.
November 17, 2005 -- The latest issue of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF POSTAL SUPERVISORS POSTAL LEGISLATIVE UPDATE is available on this site.
November 17, 2005 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal), published by the MRU Consultancy, has reported that:
Next Tuesday will see the launch of Europe's first - the operator claims - hybrid post route. This technological innovation, which is due to operate in Germany between Munster and Berlin, involves collecting digital mail from the consignor, processing it on a central computer and transmitting it to its destination, where it is printed out, sorted for delivery by postmen and handed over to Deutsche Post AG or an alternative operator. The service provider Pegasus - Print & Mail GmbH claims transmission time for a standard letter will not exceed one day and transmission costs will be reduced by up to 40%.
The German Association of Courier, Express and Postal Service Providers (BdKEP) intends to renew its complaint to the EU Commission regarding Deutsche Post AG's exemption from sales tax.
Last week in Bern, around 3,500 employees from Schweizerische Post demonstrated for better pay. Their central claim concerns a monthly pay increase of 175 CHF. The trade unions "Kommunikation" and "transfair" say the claim is in proportion with the post's profit of last year.
The Business Post Group plc mail subsidiary UK Mail was able to increase its turnover six times compared to last year.
UK Mail achieved an almost sixfold increase in turnover to just under 22m euros, thus increasing its share of the group's turnover from 2 to 11%.
United Postal Service (UPS) has performed drastic cuts in its controversial policy of reimbursing leading managers for removal expenses. Earlier this month, UPS announced that senior executives would only be reimbursed up to approx. 5,000 euros on presentation of receipts. Earlier, bonus payments of up to 20,000 euros, or in individual cases even the double were not unheard of.
Post Danmark's operating result dropped by almost 17% to 136m euros. In an official statement from the government- owned post, declining mail volumes and higher costs, especially for transport and fuel, were stated as the chief factors behind the development.
The Italian government has requested Poste Italiane to save an additional 150m euros. The decision is part of the 2006 Budget Act. The trade unions estimate that the decision could cost around 9,000 jobs.
Osterreichische Post confirmed plans to take over the CEP operator Trans-o-flex. The aim is said to be the establishment of a service provider operating throughout Europe, using its presence to set up a Europe-wide sales network.
According to renowned analysts Morgan Stanley DHL is again suffering from considerable service problems in the USA. The trouble spot appears to be the new company hub in California.
Germany's Hermes-Versand is introducing its own mailing cartons at its approx. 10,000 parcel shops from December. A Hermes press release stated that the blue cartons were "between 25 and 30% cheaper than similar parcel sets provided by competitors".
TNT is moving further into the Asia-Pacific logistics business with the help of the Chinese Cosco Group.
The MRU, founded in 1992, is the only consultancy in Europe, which has specialised in the market of courier-, express- and parcel services. For large-scale shippers and CEP-services in particular, the MRU provides interdisciplinary advice for all major questions of the market, as there are for example market entry, product design, organisation, and EDP.To learn more about the stories reported above, contact CEP News.
November 17, 2005 -- The latest Executive Brief on the impact of the sunset clause on the postal negotiations is available on the www.europe-economics.com website.
November 17, 2005 -- Capital FM has reported that "DHL Area Commercial Manager, Howard Goldfield says retail business is expected to experience steady growth as a result of increasing international travel by individuals. Speaking this morning during the launch of DHL's Retail Operating System, which will enable customers to conduct their transactions through electronic smart cards, Goldfield said the company has been focusing on retail business by putting its service centres in easily accessible areas. He says currently 22 percent of the company's turn over comes from retail courier services."
November 16, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "Any "bail-out" of Royal Mail's ·4bn pension fund deficit by taxpayers was yesterday ruled out by the government in the first clear statement of its plans for the state-owned postal operator in the run-up to full market competition next year. MPs were told by Barry Gardiner, competitiveness minister, the government might breach European state aid laws if it agreed to the company's request to put billions of pounds into the pension fund." See also The Times.
November 16, 2005 -- According to Edicom, "It will not be necessary any more to pass by the Post office to send letters of more than 100 grams as of April. The federal Council confirmed this stage of the liberalization of the postal market. The monopoly of the Post office will be limited consequently to the routing of the letters up to 100 G In all the other sectors, ex-governed will be in competition with the private ones. The interested companies to distribute letters of more than 100 G will have to be for the benefit of a concession allotted by the federal Department of communication (DETEC). The granting of the concession will be in particular related to the respect of the usual working conditions in the branch."
November 16, 2005 -- Dow Jones has reported that "Competitors of German postal service and logistics company Deutsche Post AG on Tuesday called on Germany's new coalition government to stick to the plan to lift the monopoly on the German mail market by the end of 2007. The competitors were responding to a call to extend Deutsche Post's monopoly in the postal market made by Rolf Buettner, a board member of the services trade union Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft, or ver.di, and also a member of the supervisory board of Deutsche Post. Currently Deutsche Post has exclusive rights to deliver letters weighing up to 100 grams."
November 16, 2005 -- Online.ie has reported that "The body set up to oversee compliance with social partnership deals is due to hold further talks with both sides in the An Post dispute later today. The talks will focus on an independent study commissioned by the National Implementation Body to assess the cost of proposals put forward by the Communications Workers Union. The CWU wants a number of changes to a Labour Court recommendation that said outstanding pay increases due to postal workers under the Sustaining Progress agreement should be linked to reform of work practices. It has agreed to defer strike action pending the compilation of the independent report, which was presented to the NIB earlier this week." See also Business World.
November 16, 2005 -- As the New York Post put it: "The hike is in the mail." Yeah....We know....Boy, do we know.
November 16, 2005 -- The Montreal Gazette has reported that "Canada Post has fired two Montreal letter carriers and suspended a third as part of an investigation with police into clandestine shift-selling at the crown corporation. The first carrier was arrested 10 days ago after it was found he had hoarded 75,000 letters and packages over five years at his Montreal apartment and at his cottage near Joliette. The man has not yet been charged. Mail theft is a criminal offence that carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. The second carrier was fired after some of the letters he was supposed to have delivered - about 700 - were found last week among the first carrier's stash. A third carrier suspected of selling parts of his routes has been suspended, and could face more disciplinary action as the investigation continues."
November 16, 2005 -- The Associated Press has reported that "The Bush administration has yet to follow through on a two-year-old plan to find and plug holes in air cargo security and doesn't even have a schedule for completing it, according to congressional investigators."
November 15, 2005 -- The Governors' decision regarding R2005-1 is available on the Postal Rate Commission web site.
November 15, 2005 -- According to PostCom Vice President Kate Muth, "The mailing industry was not surprised by the Board of Governors decision to accept the recommendation of the Postal Rate Commission in R2005-1, but some in industry were taken aback by the governors announcement that the new rates would take effect on Jan. 8, 2006. Industry had expected implementation on Jan. 15 or later. The BOG s announcement makes the Postal Service-industry partnership seem a little like a dysfunctional family affair.÷
November 15, 2005 -- In a letter addressed sent to all members of the U.S. Senate, USPS senior vice president for government relations, Tom Day, wrote:
"The Senate may soon consider S. 662, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act. An amendment is likely to be offered to S. 662 which purports to require the U.S. Postal Service to offer "fair and equitable" rates. While this amendment sounds reasonable, it will negate the other pricing provisions contained in the bill. The Postal Service is strongly opposed to this amendment.
"An amendment elevating fair and equitable to an objective of S. 662 subverts the entire reform bill. Fair and equitable is a term of art intended to preserve the current system of postal pricing. By retaining the status quo, the amendment would not allow, as the bill's price cap intends, the Postal Service to encourage more efficiently prepared mail volume. The success of a price cap depends on the Postal Service's ability to encourage more efficient mail and achieve the needed productivity gains to comply with the price cap. In the short term, this harms the more efficient mailers by failing to recognize their efficiency. In the long term, a less efficient Postal Service imperils the financial viability of the Postal Service. The proposed language would not protect mailers, but instead inevitably lead to higher rates for all mailers....The fair and equitable amendment attempts to benefit some mailers at the expense of the entire postal system and its future economic viability."
November 15, 2005 -- Traffic World has reported that "DHL plans to build its largest U.S. on-airport service center at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport in North Carolina. DHL expects to invest $6 million in the development of the new facility, consolidating four Charlotte, N.C.-area facilities into a single service center. The Charlotte service center will handle a wide variety of shipments, including domestic and international parcels as well as palletized and container freight."
November 15, 2005 -- Business World has reported that "Communications watchdog, ComReg, today issued a definition of the Universal Postal Service giving the minimum facilities that must be provided. In addition to the standard letter service, the key elements in the working definition include: full bulk mail services, an upper limit of E4,600 in compensation payable for items lost or delayed and a single standard parcel offering to all destinations with target delivery times, prices that comply with the tariff principles, as well as a registered and insured parcel service."
November 15, 2005 -- the Manawatu Standard has reported that "Up to 650 New Zealand Post workers are set to lose their jobs nationwide due to the introduction of new mail sorting machinery."
November 15, 2005 -- Reuters has reported that "U.S. antitrust officials have cleared Deutsche Post AG's acquisition of Britain's Exel Plc, which does approximately 30 percent of its logistics business in the United States. U.S. antitrust authorities closed their review of the transaction without taking any action to block the deal, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission said in a notice posted on its Web site on Monday. The acquisition would allow Europe's biggest postal operator to double its logistics business, adding Exel's operations in Britain, the United States and Asia."
November 15, 2005 -- So what's behind the FirstLogic-Pitney Bowes deal that fell through? The La Crosse Tribune has a decent summary.
November 15, 2005 -- As Maine Today has noted, "To say that L.L. Bean relies on the Postal Service is a pretty dramatic understatement. Bean has more than a passing interest in pending legislation in Congress to reform the way postal officials set rates. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, wants to change the ratemaking process by allowing the Postal Service to independently set rates up to a limit that would be based on the rise in consumer prices. Any challenges would be dealt with after the fact, allowing postal officials to move more nimbly in response to rising costs. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., however, has a hold in place on the legislation, meaning it's unlikely to go anywhere this year. There are billions of dollars at stake and, according to Bean, the future of mail service itself."
November 15, 2005 -- FijiVillage has reported that "The U.S. Postal Inspector's office in Honolulu has been asked to investigate reports of fake Postal Service money orders in American Samoa."
November 15, 2005 -- From the Federal Trade Commission: "Three corporations and their officers have been barred from making false promises to consumers concerning employment with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) under the terms of a temporary restraining order issued by a U.S. district court judge at the request of the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC alleged the defendants promised consumers help in registering for and obtaining postal employment in the consumer's area, and guaranteed them job placement if they obtained a score of 90 or above on the USPS employment examination. In reality, the defendants are not connected with the USPS, and postal jobs are not available through them."
November 15, 2005 -- CNET News has reported that "Stamps.com is on the final leg of moving its "Simple Plan" customers to its higher priced Stramps.com Pro plan. But developer and businessman Donald Bridges of Texas is not willing to go. For Bridges, it's a case of simple math. He'll pay roughly $1.15 per piece of mail for the approximately 14 pieces he sends out monthly under the Pro plan, verses 35 cents per piece under the Simple plan. Bridges said it?s a losing proposition for him to migrate to the $15.99 per month plan. Stamps.com, however, found keeping the $4.99 monthly plan was a money-loser for the company, according to the Internet postal service."
November 15, 2005 -- According to The Times, "THE Royal Mail chairman's hopes of raising private investment for the organisation have been dashed by the Trade and Industry Secretary, who will use legislation to sanction shares only for employees. Allan Leighton had wanted to bring in investment in return for a 10 per cent holding in Royal Mail, in addition to giving a 20 per cent stake to its employees. However, Alan Johnson, the Trade and Industry Secretary, has told The Times that the Government would consider only employee ownership of the state-owned organisation in a share trust."
November 15, 2005 -- The Wall Street Journal has reported that "FedEx Corp., the world's largest air express delivery company, said it expects its Chinese operations to continue growing at a rapid rate, with the introduction of a new hub and more flights."
November 14, 2005 -- Yes sir, folks. Your "good" friends over at the Postal Service have announced that the Governors have approved the Postal Rate Commission's recommended decision, and have ordered the implementation of new rates...now get this...January 8, 2006. Can you believe it? They couldn't even hold off implementation one week more to coincide with the Martin Luther King holiday weekend. Yes sir. Partners in progress....What a bunch of hooey.
November 14, 2005 -- Firstlogic, Inc., a global provider of enterprise information quality solutions, announced today that Pitney Bowes, Inc., and Firstlogic have verbally agreed not to extend their merger agreement when it expires November 15. This will conclude Pitney's planned acquisition of Firstlogic, which had been publicly announced September 1.
November 14, 2005 -- Traffic World has reported that "No sooner had German investor Cornelius Geber announced he might buy Dutch post and transport company TNT than the firm mentioned it has more than $1 billion ready for acquisitions of its own. "We are actively looking in the express arena in Europe and we are even looking in China and working on one or two ideas for acquisitions," TNT CEO Peter Bakker told Reuters Monday. TNT has been a target of takeover speculation, usually involving UPS or FedEx. Analysts expressed skepticism about Geber's intentions. Bakker said TNT prefers to remain independent."
November 14, 2005 -- As the Lynchburg News & Advance has noted, "Lynchburg's processing and distribution mail center on Odd Fellows Road is being outfitted with a $125,000 anthrax-detection system. Now there's a questionable use of homeland security dollars. Four people died in the wake of September 11 when some unknown "terrorist," likely homegrown, sent the potentially lethal bacteria via the U.S. Postal Service. Nationally, $375 million has been spent at 270 processing and distribution centers to deter future anthrax attacks. Wow, might there be a more prudent way to spend that much money?"
November 14, 2005 -- In a letter to Senators Bond and Collins, the President of the Financial Services Roundtable said with regard to the impasse over the Hallmark language that "The Financial Services Roundtable does not believe it is necessary at this time to choose between these two positions at opposite ends of the spectrum. We suggest that there exists a reasonable middle ground." Hmmmm. Has all the echoes of an earlier generation's "Peace in our time."
November 14, 2005 -- TheStreet.com has reported that "Lockheed Martin got a contract valued at up to $120 million from the U.S. Postal Service to improve automated address recognition. The project involves upgrades to the USPS Remote Computer Reader system deployed by Lockheed Martin Distribution Technologies at 350 USPS processing and distribution centers. "The RCR-driven, USPS letter mail address recognition program is a major success story that has resulted in substantial cost savings for the Postal Service and more accurate and efficient mail delivery for United States residents and businesses," said Brian Tanton, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin's Distribution Technologies business. Under the contract, Lockheed Martin and suppliers will enable the USPS to automatically finalize even more letter mail to address read rates above the current 92%."
November 14, 2005 -- According to Forum 18, "Uzbekistan's main international post office at Khalkaro in the capital Tashkent faces a huge task each week, opening parcels of religious books and magazines sent from abroad, sending one copy of each title to the government's Religious Affairs Committee, collecting the copies back with the Committee decision as to whether or not to ban them, writing to the sender and the failed recipient to explain why the books have been rejected, and (sometimes) returning them at Uzbek Post Office expense to the sender. But Kural Tulebaev, the Director of Khalkaro Post Office, and customs officials based there have denied that this represents censorship. "We're just following the law," Tulebaev told Forum 18 News Service from Tashkent on 11 November. The authorities have frequently confiscated religious literature from Muslims, Christians, Jehovah's Witnesses and Hare Krishna devotees. On occasion courts have ordered that religious literature be burnt. The authorities prevent literature being brought in from neighbouring Kazakhstan or from Russia and also obstruct it from being sent from abroad."
November 14, 2005 -- In its latest DMM Advisory, the U.S. Postal Service has noted that "We update the DMM on Postal Explorer (pe.usps.com) concurrent with the first Postal Bulletin of every month, so Postal Explorer is always your current source for mailing standards. The November DMM is available today and includes the following changes: Change-of-Address Orders We revised 507.2.1 to add two additional methods for submitting change-of-address orders: Internet Change of Address (ICOA) and Telephone Change of Address (TCOA). We also clarified circumstances when change-of-address orders are not accepted. Labeling Lists We revised labeling list L201 to reflect changes in mail processing operations. Check the Summary of Changes for a complete listing of DMM updates since the January printing. You will find revisions listed by effective date and also by chapter, with clickable links to revised sections. Our next scheduled update is December 8."
November 14, 2005 -- UPS has announced it has expanded shipping options available to sellers on eBay.com to include international delivery. The new service provides U.S.-based eBay users the ability to expand their businesses and ship packages internationally with the same reliability they have come to expect from UPS's domestic shipping services. UPS is currently integrated into eBay's shipping center page, allowing sellers to make shipping a seamless part of their selling process. The eBay Shipping Center (www.ebay.com/shipping) gives sellers all of the information needed to accomplish the essential aspects of shipping, right from within eBay and PayPal."
November 14, 2005 -- The Irish Independent has reported that "Accountants Grant Thornton are due to report back to the National Implementation Body (NIB) today with their analysis of the cost of various new measures An Post would like to introduce." See also Ireland Online.
November 14, 2005 -- According to the Polish News Bulletin, "It is likely that the majority of state-controlled companies will have their management boards wiped out and replaced, as the new government gets ready to "verify" the achievements of those installed by previous governments. Among other firms on the list for a change to the top spot is national post office Poczta Polska."
November 14, 2005 -- According to Smart Money, "UNITED PARCEL SERVICE delivers nearly 10,000 packages a minute, moving about 2% of the world's gross domestic product every business day. Globalization has been kind to the world's largest package delivery company, whose earnings climbed 15%, to $3.3 billion, last year."
November 14, 2005 -- Reuters has reported that "United Parcel Service Inc. will resume contract talks with its pilots union on Dec. 19, with wage and pension issues still the main sticking points. Federal law prohibits the 2,500 pilots from striking as long as mediation continues. A 30-day "cooling-off period" is needed before a strike can begin. Atlanta-based UPS, the world's largest package delivery company, said it has yet to make its last, best offer, and is committed to the mediation process."
November 14, 2005 -- As the Asahi Shimbun has noted, "the fact that a leading banker like Nishikawa will head the country's postal services shows that times have really changed. The government must have decided that his experience and management skills were essential in getting privatization off on the right foot. The responsibility Nishikawa will shoulder in steering a giant organization of 260,000 employees is significant."
November 14, 2005 -- As USA Today has noted, the "Postal Service is working to stamp out mail woes in New Orleans."
November 14, 2005 -- Business Day has reported that "THE postal regulator has embarked on a nationwide road show to get thousands of unregistered couriers companies onto its books."
November 14, 2005 -- According to postal commentator Gene Del Polito, "The mathematician and general semanticist Alfred Korzybski once wrote: "The map is not the territory." If Korzybski was alive today, he would have felt at home with the intricacies of general semantics as they played out in the postal reform debate of 2005. In this year's postal debate, the words "fairness and equity" had nothing to do with either. In this case, those who opposed "fairness and equity" were on the side of the angels. They wanted a postal system that was open to innovation, new product development, and a finer tuning of postal products and services to better meet a nation's changing postal needs."
November 13, 2005 -- According to Logistics Essentials, "TNT has established that a level playing field does not exist at present. Compared to Royal Mail and Deutsche Post, new entrants to the UK and German postal markets are still disadvantaged by the VAT system. Other issues include licensing conditions, anti-competitive regulation of network access and rates, and market obstruction by both national postal companies. These problems do not exist in the Dutch market, which means that competition is already developing rapidly. TNT emphasises that the new laws and regulations must properly reflect the economic characteristics of the postal market, which differ from those in the telecommunications and energy markets. Unnecessary sector-specific regulation will lead to distortion of the market. TNT is also urging for sufficient attention to be paid to lessening the administrative burden." See also Reuters.
November 13, 2005 -- The Independent has reported that "The Government is set to inject around ·2bn to help plug the Royal Mail's gaping pension-fund deficit. Bosses at the state-owned postal service are understood to be confident that the Government has listened to their concerns about the ·4bn black hole in the final-salary pension scheme and that it will help out with the cash injection. In addition, although no final decision has been made, the Government is expected to back Royal Mail chairman Allan Leighton's controversial plan to hand over 20 per cent of the business to its staff, and to green-light an investment programme of nearly ·2bn. The Royal Mail wants the money to improve sorting systems. It is also likely that Postcomm will soften its stance on price controls."
November 12, 2005 -- AMEInfo has reported that "Emirates Post signs Dhs. 14 million contract to install more advanced machines for faster mail sorting."
November 12, 2005 -- According to Nikkei News, "the government must ensure that the four new postal companies -- in charge of mail, savings, insurance and post office management -- will become truly private businesses as quickly as possible. That demands competent management teams manned with veterans in the private sector as well as swift sales of government shares in the postal holding company. Former bureaucrats who have no experience in private business are not a good choice for the posts, which require a great deal of experience and expertise in managing private businesses. The government should recruit outstanding businesspeople from the private sector for these jobs and support them with flat-out efforts to ensure that the new companies will become viable private entities as soon as possible."
November 12, 2005 -- The latest issue of the PostCom Bulletin is available online. In this issue:
Hey! You've not been getting the weekly PostCom Bulletin--the best postal newsletter anywhere...bar none? Send us by email your name, company, company title, postal and email address. Get a chance to see what you've been missing.
November 12, 2005 -- The St. Petersburg Times has reported that "seven veteran St. Petersburg mail carriers were summoned to the station manager's office through a side entrance. As an armed postal inspector stood by, the letters were read to them. They were losing their jobs, they learned that day in September, for failing to deliver bulk mail advertising to a handful of customers on their routes who had specifically asked them not to. Citing improper conduct, the Postal Service alleges the carriers didn't perform their duties. The companies that produce bulk mail had paid to have it delivered to every address, the Postal Service maintains, and the St. Pete Seven didn't do that. The carriers don't dispute that. But they were not trying to shirk their duty, they say. They were only doing what their customers had asked them to do. Those customers side with their carriers."
November 12, 2005 -- Il Sole 24 Ore has reported that "The Italian post office, Poste Italiane, and its French equivalent, La Poste, will jointly launch a mutual investment fund on Monday. From that day, customers of the two networks will be able to subscribe to the eight-year fund when they take out a life insurance policy with either Posta Vita in Italy or Services Financiers in France."
November 12, 2005 -- Financial Times Deutschland has reported that "Osterreichische Post, the Austrian postal service operator, is reported to be in negotiations regarding a takeover of Transoflex, the German special logistics company. The latter specialises in delivering pharmaceutical products to hospitals and chemists' shops. According to sources in the sector, the Austrian company is prepared to pay up to 500m euros for Transoflex, which, according to the most recent figures, has a turnover of 430m euros."
November 11, 2005 -- According to Euronext, "TNT has taken note of the Council of Ministers' decision to request advice from the Council of State regarding the proposal for a new postal act. In light of the proposed full liberalisation of the postal market in the Netherlands, the present Dutch Postal Act will need to be amended. TNT is a proponent of postal liberalisation, provided a level playing field is created in Europe. According to the Postal Memorandum, liberalisation in the Netherlands will have to keep in step with the rate of liberalisation and actual competitive opportunities in Germany and the United Kingdom." See also Reuters.
November 11, 2005 -- eWeek has asked: "Is E-Mail Becoming the New Snail Mail?" It reported that "The instant message appears to be catching up to e-mail as the favored way to communicate using the Internet, suggests a new survey conducted by America Online. Of the 4,000 people interviewed by America Online, a subsidiary of Time Warner Inc., a quarter of them preferred IM, the electronic messages that appear unprompted on a computer screen, over using e-mail. Some 15 percent America Online surveyed in 2004 favored IM. While adults and seniors in 2005 showed more interest in IM, its gains on e-mail are largely due the "teens and tweens" with spending power and trendsetting tastes.
November 11, 2005 -- The Communication Workers Union has said that "Postal workers' basic pay continues to lag behind the UK national average, according to the Government's latest annual survey of hours and earnings released today. Communication Workers' Union deputy general secretary Dave Ward said the latest figures showed the national average weekly basic pay was ·391, while postmen and women earned, on average, less than 80 per cent of that - ·311.50 before tax and national insurance deductions. "The latest official figures show Royal Mail employees continue to be lowly paid and the gap between their wages and the UK average continues to grow," Mr Ward said."
November 11, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "Paul Kehoe takes up the reins from outgoing chief executive Peter Brougham at DX Services, the business mail group, as he steps down today. It was understood that some shareholders had been unhappy about the group's strategy when Mr Brougham resigned in mid-August. He had worked on the demerger of the business out of Hays, the recruitment company. Mr Kehoe, 46, comes from a career in the aviation and business services sectors."
November 11, 2005 -- The BBC has reported that:
November 11, 2005 -- According to The Scotsman, "LESSONS in how to post a letter are being given to Scottish office workers and small businesses to cope with the introduction of a new Royal Mail pricing system, which has been described as "incredibly complicated". From August next year, postal pricing will focus on size and shape as well as weight under plans approved by the postal regulator, Postcomm. The "pricing in proportion" system will mean higher charges for light but large items, but cheaper costs for some heavier items, such as books and catalogues. Customers with bulky or outsized envelopes and packages will have to go to a post office, where they can check them against templates. The watchdog Postwatch Scotland is holding seminars to explain the system to small businesses and workers in charities and voluntary organisations."
November 11, 2005 -- The Memphis Commercial Appeal has reported that "As shares of the world's fourth-largest package carrier fizzled Thursday, Wall Street matchmakers couldn't resist thinking FedEx Corp. would be the perfect suitor. Dutch transportation company TNT NV, a composite of three entities -- the Dutch postal service, express delivery and logistics -- lost more than 5 percent of its stockholder value Thursday, a day after a private German investor said he was putting together a group, including an unnamed strategic investor in the logistics field, to buy it. Analysts say it's very possible FedEx is the strategic investor, interested in buying the express delivery or logistics division, or both."
November 11, 2005 -- According to The Tide, "The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) has in Abuja announced that it will restructure Nigeria Postal Service (NIPOST) into new business units in its bid to reform and privatise the enterprise. The unbundled units which will then be privatised to conclude the reform of the enterprise, will however be preceded by a performance agreement between the enterprise and the ministry of communication as recommended by the NETHPOST Consultancy BU of Netherlands which conducted the feasibility analysis on the restructuring of the NIPOST."
November 11, 2005 -- As the Los Angeles Times has noted, "It was bad enough when their mail stopped coming to their homes. But when the U.S. Postal Service ignored letters of complaint from residents and city leaders, those in Pomona realized it was time to push the envelope. Postal administrators had suspended delivery to the 2200 block of Carlton Avenue after a frightened letter carrier witnessed a drive-by shooting a year and a half ago. The mail service cutoff came without warning. Residents also weren't advised when the post office later installed a centralized mailbox for the block's 32 families on a nearby street. Even after those living in the house that was involved in the shooting moved out, Carlton Avenue's mailman stayed away. After months of failing to get answers to their letters to the Postal Service asking that service be restored, city officials were preparing to take the unusual step of picketing the Pomona post office on downtown's Monterey Avenue when postal authorities grudgingly agreed to restart home delivery."
November 11, 2005 -- This Is Local London has reported that "Barnet Council is considering dropping the Royal Mail as its deliverer of poll cards and postal vote forms after a series of blunders during this year's general election. According to a council report, the Royal Mail failed to deliver poll cards to a number of streets in the borough, and many poll cards and postal votes were not received until after the election. The council is now considering taking on the delivery itself, or employing a contractor."
November 11, 2005 -- The Norwich Bulletin has an interesting piece illustrating the political nonsense that often surrounds zip codes.
November 11, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "Global express, mail and logistics provider Deutsche Post has announced that its revenues have risen by 2.5% to 32,512m in the first nine months of its financial year. Operating profits leapt by 19.9% to 2,372m. Despite some integration issues in the UK and France, measures implemented under the STAR value creation program contributed 163 million to earnings in the third quarter. In total the three year programme will have contributed at least 1.4 billion to profits by the end of the year. During the period, DPWN's Mail division increased its revenues to around 9.4 billion. The decline in German domestic postal revenues was counterbalanced by strong growth in the international mail business which rose by 17% to around 1.5 billion. This corresponds to 16% of the division's total revenue. Operating profit for the division remained at around 1.5 billion." See also the Wall Street Journal.
November 11, 2005 -- The latest copy of the National Association of Postmasters of the U.S. electronic governmental affairs newsletter is available on the NAPUS web site.
November 11, 2005 -- As the Associated Press has noted, "From the Korean War soldier telling family he had been wounded to the Civil War missive letting a future wife know her letters were his only source of pleasure, the National Postal Museum opens an exhibit of war letters on Friday - Veterans Day. "War Letters: Lost and Found," features letters to and from service members. The letters had been lost or abandoned and then rediscovered by strangers."
November 10, 2005 -- Handelsblatt has reported that "Rivals of German postal services provider Deutsche Post have called for the new German government to levy VAT on the monopolist. The federal association of international express and courier services (BIEK) said that Deutsche Post's exemption costs the treasury between 150m euros and 330m euros each year. The association believes that this gives Deutsche Post an unfair advantage over its rivals and stated that the situation could be changed immediately using EU law."
November 10, 2005 -- As the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has noted, "The U.S. Postal Service has curtailed the astronomical moving expenses allowed its senior executives, which seems prudent considering that one of them soaked the agency for $50,000 for a single move. The postal service says the decision to hold the line on such payments has nothing to do with the proposed increase in first-class stamps to 39 cents in January. Moving expenses no doubt are a small part of the USPS budget, but the public's skepticism is inevitable."
November 10, 2005 -- According to InformationWeek, "Some researchers expect postal and courier mail services to become the second largest market for radio frequency identification item-level tagging, following the retail sector."
November 10, 2005 -- The Periodical Press Association has reported that "Royal Mail has released figures showing that single copy magazine subscriptions have increased by 7.9 per cent over the past year, with subscriptions accounting for 12.3 per cent of all sales. The rise was attributed to several factors, not least the threat to the distribution chain posed by the Office of Fair Trading. Royal Mail's head of publishing/marketing Tom Wasilewski joined a panel of postal operators including David Higham of TNT Mail, John Ives of DHL GLobal, Gary Winter of UK Mail, Lawrie Oakley of AMP and moderator Adam Novak, to debate the future of postal delivery at PPA's Magazine Subscriptions conference today (10 November)."
November 10, 2005 -- News24.com has reported that "Zimbabwe's triple-digit inflation shot up to 411% in October on a year before, dealing an embarrassing blow to central bank targets to reduce it to about 300% by year-end, according to official figures released on Thursday. This compares with South Africa's inflation rate of 4.7%. The increase hit postal rates, hairdressing charges and the prices of bicycles the hardest, up by 1,965.6%, 1 750.8% and 1,838% respectively."
November 10, 2005 -- Dominican Today has reported that "Dominican Postal Institute (Inposdom) director Modesto Guzm n said that he wants to win the confidence and credibility of the Dominican community residing abroad on the basis of capacity and efficiency, to spur the remittances of correspondences and packages with the security that they will be received intact by their relatives and friends. Guzm n said that the Dominican Government's responsibility is to assure that those who use the mail service is to deliver on time and with no losses."
November 10, 2005 -- A copy of the latest UPU Direct Mail Advisory Board update has been posted on this site. The Direct Mail Advisory Board (DMAB) is a group of postal and industry organizations, and its mission is to "foster the growth of Direct Mail as a factor of economic and market expansion by increasing market knowledge and by developing the expertise of stakeholders at all levels". For more information, please do not hesitate to contact Raquel Ferrari, Project Manager, Direct Mail, UPU at firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 10, 2005 -- In a letter to the Governors of the U.S. Postal Service regarding the Postal Rate Commission recommended decision in the matter of Docket No. R2005-1, the Association for Postal Commerce wrote:
"The Association for Postal Commerce ("PostCom") urges the Governors in the strongest possible terms to instruct Postal Service Management to immediately initiate corrective action that will rectify the Postal Rate Commission's misguided and unfortunate decision in application to a Media Service/Library Rate subclass. The Commission rejected the across-the-board settlement rates and has, instead, recommended a 12.7% increase for Media Services/Library Rates. This has dire consequences to the Postal Service, as well as the members of PostCom that have used Media Services to deliver their educational and instructional products to consumers and educational institutions.
"We do not ask that the case be remanded to the Commission; we recognize that other considerations make this outcome impractical. We do believe that it is both necessary and proper for the Governors to accept the proposed increase under protest in order to make clear that something is seriously amiss with the Commission's decision, as we discuss below. But that is not enough. The Governors must also recognize that responsibility for this disproportionate and irrational rate increase does not entirely lie with the Rate Commission: for more than 30 years, the Postal Service has simply ignored the needs and concerns of Media Services/Library Rate mailers and has made no effort to modernize this service. That indifference to a small but important subclass cannot be permitted to continue."
November 10, 2005 -- Bizjournals.com has reported that "The Community Bankers Association of Ohio chose UPS Capital, the financial services arm of UPS Inc., as its preferred provider for Small Business Administration loans. The partnership means banks that belong to the association will be able to obtain SBA-backed loans through UPS Capital, the two organizations said Monday. UPS reached the partnership with CBAO Service Corp., a subsidiary of the association that provides services to member banks."
November 10, 2005 -- TVNZ has reported that "New Zealand Post is set to announce the first of as many as 1000 job losses nationwide next week following the roll out of new mail sorting machinery over the next five years."
November 10, 2005 -- CWU General Secretary Billy Hayes has told a rally of Royal Mail workers at Cambridge the Government must invest in the organisation - and its employees - to ensure it has a viable future.
November 10, 2005 -- According to Ovum, "DPWN has reorganised its entire IT services operation by bundling its international competencies together, although DP IT Solutions still exists alongside Global Customer Solutions, which runs the three data centres in the Czech Republic, the US and Malaysia. The sheer size of the operation and its presence in 220 countries require IT services on an international scale. While DP IT Solutions has its share of the pie, it is mainly German-centric and therefore IT suppliers with an international presence should be a welcome addition."
November 10, 2005 -- The Polish News Bulletin has reported that "Poland's national Post Office (Poczta Polska) promises to reach a record high pre-tax profit in 2005, and awaits a parliamentary decision on its plans to go public. After first nine months of the year the company had made a pre-tax profit of ZL500m. "Profit for the three quarters reached a historic high, and was five times higher than in the same period last year," said Poczta Polska president Tadeusz Bartkowiak. The company has a long-term goal of being floated on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, but is currently focusing on a conversion from the special status of a public-service firm to a commercial legal entity."
November 10, 2005 -- Bloomberg has reported that "Deutsche Post AG, Europe's biggest postal service, said third-quarter profit more than doubled as the company saved money at new divisions and handled more packages and freight."
November 10, 2005 -- The European Commission has posted on its web site:
November 10, 2005 -- Nhan Dan has reported that "The government has given the Vietnam Post and Telecommunications Corporation (VNPT) the green light to further penetrate the financial industry by allowing it to provide some banking services. The government will allow VNPT's Vietnam Postal Savings Company (VPSC) to provide payment and deposit services, such as issuing cheques and ATM cards and opening individual savings accounts."
November 10, 2005 -- The Vietnam News Agency has reported that "A meeting to further cooperation on postal systems between Laos and Thailand was held recently in Xieng Khouang province in Laos. The meeting, the 13th of its kind, aimed to review and evaluate the cooperation between the two sides during the past year and plan the cooperation activities next year. During the function, the two sides signed a cooperation agreement for 2006, which stresses the furtherance of cooperation on several fronts, particularly in the areas of express mail delivery and regular mail delivery services by both land and sea. The two sides also agreed to help each other by organising training courses and study tours to upgrade the skills of their employees. They will also cooperate on the implementation of monetary services, international postal services and stamp promotions."
November 10, 2005 -- Bloomberg has reported that "Shares of TNT NV, Europe's second- largest delivery company, gained the most in almost seven years after German investor Cornelius Geber said he's interested in making a bid for the Dutch delivery company. Geber, a former transport executive, said in a telephone interview today he's approached TNT, which has a market value of 10.6 billion euros ($12.5 billion), about an offer. Discussions with partners for the effort are at ``a very early stage.'' He declined to identify potential partners." See also the Financial Times.
November 10, 2005 -- The National Association of Postmasters of the U.S. (NAPUS) has reported that "The Postal Service has received authority from the Office of Personnel Management to offer Voluntary Early Retirements (VER) to postal employees (including Postmasters) in areas that were severely impacted by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The USPS will determine who will be offered VER's in the storm torn areas of AL, LA, MS, and Houston. Additional information on the VER will be provided as soon as it becomes available."
November 10, 2005 -- Le Figaro has reported that "Preparations by the French post office, La Poste, to set up its own banking service are entering their final stage as CECEI, the body which authorises the creation of new banks in France, examines the project. The CECEI will consider, in particular, whether the postal bank's equity capital is sufficient for its future business. It will also scrutinise the proposed financial relations between the bank and its parent company, La Poste."
November 9, 2005 -- According to Dow Jones, "the Dutch state is likely to hold on to TNT (00906.AE) postal activities and possibly oppose takeover of TNT by a venture capitalist, says Maarten Bakker of Fortis. "I don't see the Dutch State being enthusiastic about a venture capitalist taking a stake in the post activities," he says. "The State wants to guarantee the interests of the postal market," analyst adds. But sees possible scenario in which state can hold its stake in postal activities and that TNT's express and logistics units are sold to third party, such as United Parcel Service (UPS)." See also Bloomberg.
November 9, 2005 -- AllAfrica.com has reported that "ONLY about 5% of the thousands of courier companies that should have applied for licences under new regulations have done so, according to estimates by the South African Express Parcel Association. This signals a poor start to government's efforts to regulate the industry."
November 9, 2005 -- Reuters has reported that "Even as banks and regulators step up efforts to thwart identity theft over the Internet, the worry that fraudsters remain one step ahead is convincing many Americans that banking online is too risky. An October survey commissioned by Internet security company Entrust and released at the forum found that 18 percent of Americans who have banked online now do so less, or not at all, because of security concerns. Ninety-four percent say they're willing to accept extra online security protections."
November 9, 2005 -- From PR Newswire: "Military families now have a convenient way to track the status of Express Mail sent to loved ones stationed around the world. Through a new tracking service available on usps.com, military families and others who send Express Mail to service men and women can now confirm when their mail pieces have arrived at Military Post Offices anywhere in the world except combat zones. Customers can log on at usps.com and click on "Track & Confirm" and enter the tracking number from their Express Mail receipt. The deadline for shipping packages via Express Mail Military Service (EMMS) is Dec. 19. Next year, the Postal Service plans to expand this capability to track other types of mail worldwide, including combat areas."
November 9, 2005 -- The Olympian has reported that "Six days after the U.S. Postal Service announced that it would transfer jobs from Olympia to Tacoma and possibly eliminate Olympia's postmark, it's unclear what will happen. Though a Postal Service spokesman said Tuesday that the changes would be made, U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., who is looking into the matter, has been assured that Olympia will keep its postmark. Meanwhile, a postal union official has called on the Postal Service to drop its plans."
November 9, 2005 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal), published by the MRU Consultancy, has reported that:
Japan Post achieved a net profit of almost 190m euros (- 42.4%) on a turnover of approx. 13.95bn euros (- 2.1%) during the financial year 2005 ended in March.
Veit Sorger of the supervisory board of Austria's industrial holding company OIAG has spoken in favour of Osterreichische Post going public "as soon as possible".
According to the Belgian radio, La Poste is looking for partners to operate post- office counters outside of post offices. The post hopes that a major campaign in December will help find further co-operation partners for so-called post points. So far, Belgium's La Poste has opened 50 post office counters offering basic services in department stores, banks and news agents as part of a pilot project.
Although the Belgian postal workers' union still makes militant statements, the tone has become less intense: "If the management decides to change working conditions, the union will respond", said Andre Blaise, chairman of trade union CVC.
Despite a drastic increase of over 8% to 6.50 NOK in postage rates for standard letters, Posten Norge is expecting a decrease in receipts next year.
According to the daily "Sydney City Herald", Australia Post has started selling tickets on behalf of low-fares airline Jetsta r. Travel agents are critical of the post's new nationwide service, fearing that supermarkets and petrol stations will be next in line to sell flight tickets.
The consumer organisation Postwatch accuses Royal Mail of expecting others to sort out its pension problem, for which the post itself is responsible.
France's La Poste is launching a new type of post office in a trial to explore customers' reactions to radical changes. The first office was opened this Monday with an entirely new layout and many automated services. If the response is positive, La Poste plans to invest 770m euros in the modernisation of altogether approx. 2,500 post offices until the end of 2007.
The French Chronopost, the express subsidiary of La Poste, has postponed the publication of its restructuring plan originally scheduled for last Wednesday.
The "Financial Times" (07.11) reports that Germany's railway company Deutsche Bahn AG is planning to take over BAX Global in the USA. The railway company is obviously intent on supporting its forwarding subsidiary Schenker with sea and air transport facilities from the USA to Asia and Europe.
According to the German trade magazine "Deutsche Verkehrszeitung" (04.11), Belgium's La Poste intends to merge its express service Taxipost with the parcel service Kilopost.
November 9, 2005 -- According to the Shropshire Star, "Royal Mail failed to answer protesters' questions over proposals to axe a north Shropshire sorting office when they snubbed a meeting, which left councillors and the public outraged."
November 9, 2005 -- According to icCoventry, "POST theft is rife in Coventry and Warwickshire because of the Royal Mail's shoddy working practices, according to a senior police officer."
November 9, 2005 -- Financial Times Deutschland has reported that "German postal services provider Deutsche Post has received approval for plans to transfer 850 of its branches to banking subsidiary Postbank."
November 9, 2005 -- From Business Wire: "With innovative payments technology from TSYS, Bank of Ireland has launched a new credit card for the U.K. Post Office that allows customers to treat certain transactions as instalment loans. With the "2-in-1" feature of the new post office credit cards, customers may designate up to two large-value transactions on the card as instalment loans under separate terms, reducing the outstanding revolving balance and attracting a lower rate of interest. The new card products will complement the personal-loan and insurance services offered through the Bank of Ireland and the U.K. Post Office joint venture since 2004. The programme has concluded a successful pilot stage with 100 branches in September, and will be launched nationally this month to more than 6,000 Post Office branches."
November 9, 2005 -- Fleet Owner magazine has reported that "Unions are talking worldwide organizing strategies targeted to the four largest package delivery and logistics companies in the world United Parcel Service (UPS), DHL, FedEx and TNT Logistics. Representatives from global labor groups attending the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) meeting in Washington D.C. this week are now discussing ways worldwide unions can work together to organize the Big Four express carriers, commonly referred to as "integrators," said Teamsters general president Jim Hoffa."
November 9, 2005 -- The Irish Sun has reported that "Expansion of economic activities and gaining stronger support of the Universal Postal Union are the most important goals of the ongoing Economic Cooperation Organization's (ECO) meeting. Head of the Board of Directors and Managing Director of the Iran's Postal Company Mohammad-Hassan Mohebbian Araqi told IRNA on the sidelines of the Second Meeting of ECO postal officials in Tehran on Tuesday that the meeting is to focus on different aspects of air post services or hub post among the ECO members. Araqi said that ECO members are firm on expanding cooperation in the postal sector among themselves. He said Iran has hosted the meeting with the objective of helping promote postal cooperation among ECO members. Furthermore, he said Iran eyes promotion of its postal services in the Middle East in line with the latest international standards."
November 9, 2005 -- According to the Arizona Republic, "The U.S. Postal Service is unable to pin down why, but for the past few weeks, some Northeast Valley post offices have been hit with staffing shortages.
November 9, 2005 -- According to Crikey, "Australia Post is moving on a range of fronts to extract maximum value from its brand. On Monday it was announced that they are teaming with Jetstar for the retail of tickets; two weeks ago they announced their plan to franchise some of their 863 corporate stores; and, over the past year they have licensed the use of their brand on a large range of non post office products."
November 9, 2005 -- DM News has reported that "An offering from the U.S. Postal Service that lets consumers request to have current and new catalogs forwarded to them after they move has drawn a response rate of 25 percent since it launched Sept. 17, the agency said yesterday. The free Catalog Request Card service allows consumers to inform catalogers of their new address and sign up to have new catalogs sent to that address."
November 9, 2005 -- The Universal Postal Union (UPU) and Union Network International (UNI) have signed a cooperation agreement to promote social dialogue aimed at the sustainable development of postal services at the international level. The agreement was signed at UPU Headquarters in Bern, Switzerland by UPU Director General Edouard Dayan and UNI General Secretary Philip Jennings. In terms of the agreement, the two organizations will establish joint actions focussing on the impact of postal sector development on jobs, particularly in the area of health and security, as well as the improvement and development of postal staff skills. The two organizations also agreed to continue to promote the provision of postal financial services - particularly electronic money transfer services - through the international postal network. This is not only seen as an important source of job creation but is also regarded as an essential service to give millions of migrant workers and their relatives among them the world's poorest - access to affordable money transfer services.
November 9, 2005 -- Government Computer News has reported that:
November 9, 2005 -- Jim Andersen, President and CEO of leading direct marketing production services company IWCO Direct, and Direct Marketing Association President and CEO John Greco Jr. met with Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman in Washington last week as efforts to reach a compromise on postal reform continue in the Senate. Coleman is co-sponsor of the postal reform bill that recently stalled in the Senate over the inclusion of language that could limit the postal service's flexibility in setting rates for efficient mailers.
November 9, 2005 -- Mailers Council Executive Director Robert McLean has shared an email that U.S. Postal Service Chief Financial Officer Richard Strasser sent to his postal colleagues. In it, Strasser announces his plans to retire early next year.
November 9, 2005 -- The Philadelphia Inquirer has reported that "Nilfisk-Advance America, of Malvern, has won a competitive bidding process for a $3 million contract to supply central vacuum systems to 480 United States Postal Service sorting facilities around the nation. The vacuum system, a version of the company's 350W vacuum tailored to the post office, removes dirt and debris from post office sorting machines, including the delivery bar code sorter and optical character recognition-based machines. Delivery will begin next year."
November 9, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "The logistics division of Deutsche Post, DHL Solutions has opened two new logistics centres in Brazil and plans the inauguration of a third in the near future. The warehouses of Barueri (Sao Paulo) and Manaus (AM) were the first to enter operation. The third to be inaugurated is located in the Amazon region."
November 8, 2005 -- From PR Newswire: "MessageWay Solutions, Inc. of Livonia, Michigan, a leading provider of B2B e-commerce solutions, today announced that their flagship B2B product -- MessageWay -- has been selected by the U.S. Postal Service to consolidate their electronic commerce environment. The USPS has deployed MessageWay to manage the exchange of domestic, as well as international EDI message traffic. The solution provides a combination of managed file transfer and comprehensive data translation with full visibility and control over the file exchange process."
November 8, 2005 -- According to GovExec.com, "Senate Majority Leader Frist's attempt to broker a deal between Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Chairwoman Collins and Sen. Christopher (Kit) Bond, R-Mo., on stalled postal overhaul legislation failed Monday, a Senate aide said. The deal would have allowed the bill's approval by unanimous consent, as its sponsor, Collins had advocated."
November 8, 2005 -- The Association for Postal Commerce welcomes its newest member:
Washington Economics Consulting Group, Inc. , James A. Clifton, Ph.D., President
November 8, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "Royal Mail's controversial switch from twice-daily to once-a-day deliveries last year, which the postal operator predicted would save more than 100m a year, has actually increased net annual costs by 105m, its regulator has told MPs. Royal Mail last night rejected criticisms of the cost increase produced by the switch to single delivery, saying Postcomm itself had recognised that staff changes negotiated as part of the move - a switch from a six to five-day working week, allied to higher pay levels - had produced a "platform for more efficient working."
November 8, 2005 -- The Independent has reported that "Royal Mail must not expect taxpayers or customers to help bail out its 4.5bn pension deficit, the industry's regulator Postcomm told MPs last night. Giving evidence before the Commons Trade and Industry Select Committee, the Postcomm chairman Nigel Stapleton warned that if Royal Mail was allowed to raise prices to tackle the deficit, it would drive customers away. He said the best safeguard of Royal Mail's future and a one-price-goes-anywhere letter delivery service was for the state-owned company to improve its efficiency."
November 8, 2005 -- According to Le Figaro, "Jean-Paul Bailly, chairman of La Poste, the French post office, has told the French press that new opening hours for post offices will be introduced on a trial basis in 2006."
November 8, 2005 -- The Washington Post has reported that "An attorney for a Pennsylvania woman who slipped and fell on mail left on her porch argued before the Supreme Court on Monday that she has the right to sue the government for negligence. But the Bush administration said the case falls squarely within terms set by Congress to exempt government agencies from lawsuits."
November 8, 2005 -- Ireland Online has reported that "Postal services are returning to normal today after yesterday's industrial action by staff connected to the Communications Workers Union."
November 8, 2005 -- The DM Bulletin has reported that "The Direct Mail Information Service has reported that consumers spent 27.1bn on goods promoted via direct mail in the 12 months to September 2005, an increase of 0.9% on the previous year's 26.9bn figure. The increase is less than the 2.5% increase in annual consumer price index inflation to September reported by the Office for National Statistics. It is also lower than the 2.3% increase in direct mail purchases the DMIS registered between September 2003 and September 2004."
November 8, 2005 -- From PR Newswire: "Postmaster General John E. Potter today recognized six companies for their hard work and excellent customer service in supplying United States Postal Service employees with the supplies, equipment, and services they need to deliver superior products and services to the American public."
November 8, 2005 -- In response to a National Post article of October 31, 2005 regarding the Exclusive Privilege for International mail, the President of the National Association of Major Mail Users (NAMMU) wrote: "The Canadian mailing industry needs a hero to step up boldly, end this public feuding, and lead the dialogue toward solid business conclusions."
November 8, 2005 -- The Smithsonian's National Postal Museum has announced two new additions to the museum's staff. Cheryl R. Ganz is a Museum Curator of Philately; Allison C. Marsh is a Museum Specialist in the history department.
November 7, 2005 -- In a letter to the editor of the Washington Post, Mail & Jobs executive director Peter Miller wrote: "According to the Post, the Internet has "coined a term -- splog, a combination of spam and blog -- for a phenomenon that follows in the footsteps of rogue advertising such as spam e-mail, junk mail, junk faxes and adware." The problem, of course, is that "junk mail" is simply the Post's frequent editorial term for advertising mail -- mail that competes for advertising dollars with the Washington Post....The Post is wrong to characterize the mailstream as a "rogue" medium. The Post can do better covering a rival advertising channel -- and it should."
November 7, 2005 -- The Irish Times has reported that "The Communications Workers Union (CWU) has called off its industrial action following an emergency meeting of its disputes committee this afternoon. A CWU spokesman said the union had accepted the recommendations of the National Implementation Body (NIB) and that staff would return to work at 6pm this evening."
November 7, 2005 -- From the Federal Register: "The Postal Service is proposing to require the use of the Electronic Verification System (e-VS) which is an electronic manifest system, for postage manifesting and payment of all Parcel Select mailings. This includes all Standard Mail machinable parcels or other Package Services Parcels (Bound Printed Matter, Library Mail, or Media Mail) authorized for commingling with Parcel Select Mailings. This requirement would contribute to reduced costs and greater efficiencies. The Postal Service is also exploring expanding the program to all parcel mailings in the future. The proposed rule is being published with an intended implementation date of no sooner than 1 year from the date of publication of the Federal Register final rule."
November 7, 2005 -- The Islamic Republic News Agency has reported that "Postal officials of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) member states are to hold their second meeting in Tehran on Tuesday and Wednesday (November 8-9). Formation of a postal security committee that is to adopt identical methods in postal operations with the objective of enhancing services, establishment of an electronic system to handle sales and purchases of goods and setting up of a committee to handle postal money services are some of the subjects that will be considered during the meeting. Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Turkey, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan and Iran are member states of the Economic Cooperation Organization."
November 7, 2005 -- According to UK Fundraising, "The Royal Mail has launched its First Class People awards, inviting customers to nominate Royal Mail postmen or women who are "the unsung heroes in their local community."
November 7, 2005 -- The Irish Independent has reported that "STRIKE action by postal workers, which began this morning, is likely to be called off by this afternoon after An Post agreed to an independent review of its costs."
November 7, 2005 -- RTE News has reported that "Postal services will be disrupted today as industrial action at An Post gets under way, despite a breakthrough in the dispute yesterday. The Communications Workers' Union said it would recommend a suspension of the action this afternoon."
November 6, 2005 -- Ireland Online has reported that "Postal workers have offered to suspend their planned nationwide strike if An Post allows independent costings of work practice changes."
November 6, 2005 -- In an opinion piece published in the New York Times, Postal Rate Commissioner Ruth Goldway wrote that "The Postal Service has signaled that it will ask for another rate increase next year, one that is probably even larger than this year's. But, until now, it has resisted the forever stamp even though such a stamp would do a great deal to help consumers adjust to rate increases, as well as assisting the Postal Service in managing its budget and investing in improvements. In recent years the service has been working to shed its image as a stodgy, unresponsive government monopoly. I urge it to consider the forever stamp and adopt it as a pro-consumer, money-saving reform."
November 6, 2005 -- According to the Royal Gazette, "After an absence of two years, some 40 postal workers will be returning to the AMF building at the Airport in January to resume their duties. This follows the severe damage to the mail processing centre during Hurricane Fabian two years ago. Bermuda s Postmaster General, George Outerbridge, on Tuesday told Rotarians that repairs to the physical structure of the old AMF building were recently completed. With the help of the New Zealand Postal Consulting Company, the Bermuda Mail Processing Centre (BMPC) will be converted into a Centralised Mail Processing Centre for both international and local mail. This, he said, would go a long way to facilitate an efficient mail processing operation."
November 6, 2005 -- The Irish Independent has reported that "THE CHIEF executive of An Post, Donal Curtin, has written to the communications regulator formally requesting that the company be excused from its legal obligation to provide a postal service. It is the first time a derogation has been sought under a regulatory regime established in 2002 and, according to sources, formally clears the way for regulator Comreg to ask Communications Minister Noel Dempsey to introduce early competition into the market."
November 6, 2005 -- The Times has reported that "THE Irish postal service faces serious disruption from midnight after talks about a pay rise between An Post unions and management broke down yesterday, writes Siobhan Maguire. An Post immediately suspended some services for the business sector, including all advertising and publicity mail. Last night the company said it was looking increasingly likely that it would be advising all customers not to post any mail from today. It said the strike was likely to disrupt social welfare payments this week and for the duration of the industrial action."
November 6, 2005 -- The Sunday Business Post has reported that "Minister for Communications Noel Dempsey is being urged to prepare short-term licences for private companies to collect and deliver mail so businesses can continue to operate during a postal strike. Dempsey has already said he has the option to fast-track a full market opening of postal services ahead of an EU directive, which comes into force in 2009, liberalising the sector. However, the Small Firms' Association is urging the minister to issue temporary licences to private operators who currently run a drop-off service for some companies."
November 6, 2005 -- Online.ie has reported that "The prospect of nationwide postal chaos intensified today after negotiations to avert planned strike action ended without a breakthrough. An Post management held fresh talks with Communications Workers Union representatives in a bid to settle the dispute over pay. Attempts to reach a compromise came after a ban on overtime and the shut down of selected mail centres was announced last night. The strike, which will affect Dublin's GPO and other as-yet unnamed offices, is to begin on Monday."
November 6, 2005 -- Ireland Online has reported that "As major disruption to our postal service looms, An Post is calling on the General Secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions to intervene in the dispute with the Communication Workers Union."
November 5, 2005 -- The latest issue of PostCom's PostOps Update has been posted on this site. In this issue: (1) USPS acceptance focusing on bundle preparation; (2) USPS proposed rule on strapping smaller bundles; (3) flats workgroup also looking at bundles processing; (4) USPS to participate in apps bundle test; (5) USPS continues deployment of AI modifications to AFSM 100s; (6) USPS on track with surface visibility; (7) USPS urges mailers to barcode pallet placards; (8) APPS deployment continues; (9) USPS names Fulton as flats sequencing exec director; (10) mailers seeing MTE shortages; (11) mailers FAST-ing for appointments; (12) FAST workgroup for periodicals formed; (13) USPS testing electronic 8125 process; (14) streamlining acceptance for MLOCR mailers; (15) streamlining acceptance for periodicals; (16) recent PostalOne! release successful; (17) USPS testing 4-CB height on flats; (17) workgroups focus on address quality; (18) NCOALink update; and (19) PostCom s online Postal Operations Library (The Postal Operations Library provides PostCom members with a tool to obtain the most comprehensive information available on a particular issue, such as PARS, MERLIN, or dozens of other postal operations topics.)
November 5, 2005 -- The Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star has said: "COUNT ON the catalogs that fill your mailbox getting smaller and lighter. Reducing the size and weight of the paper used is the classic way mail-order companies offset a postage increase.
November 5, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "A drop in credit card junk mail has hit Royal Mail s core business, with volumes for flagship products falling up to 7 per cent in the six months to September, the postal operator has revealed. Royal Mail s regulator said the new figures were forcing it to rework the calculations underlying price controls to be finalised this month. Royal Mail attributes the fall in its volumes the first for 25 years, bar a dip three years ago to a general economic slowdown and the impact of competition."
November 5, 2005 -- The Kansas City Star has reported that "The price we pay for postage stamps is a big part of a first-class political clash between mailing titans in the Senate. On one side is a coalition that includes Kansas City-based Hallmark Cards, the nation s largest greeting card company. Its congressional field general: Sen. Kit Bond, a Missouri Republican. Leading players on the other side are the U.S. Postal Service and L.L. Bean, the Maine mail-order giant. Their patron: Sen. Susan Collins, a Maine Republican who is shepherding a postal reform bill through the Senate. At issue aside from politicians protecting powerful home-state interests is how postal rates are set."
November 5, 2005 -- The Irish Times has reported that "Postal services will face serious disruption from Monday in spite of continuing efforts to avert industrial action by workers in An Post. A ban on overtime working and an all-out strike at the GPO in Dublin will take effect from midnight tomorrow, the Communications Workers' Union announced. There will also be strikes at "selected locations" around the country, the union said. An Post condemned the union's decision to go ahead with the action while talks with the National Implementation Body (NIB) were ongoing at Government Buildings. The talks adjourned shortly after 9.30pm and will resume today."
November 5, 2005 -- RTE Business has reported that "ISME has called for the immediate intervention of Taoiseach Bertie Ahern in what he called 'the never-ending row at An Post'. Mark Fielding, ISME's CEO, said the Taoiseach's intervention would bring some sense to the two sides locked in this 'battle to the death."
November 4, 2005 -- The latest issue of the PostCom Bulletin is available online. In this issue:
November 4, 2005 -- Traffic World has reported that "Express giant FedEx on Friday praised a United States government move to liberalize foreighn investment in U.S. airlines. The U.S. Department of Transportation, looking to bring more capital into the troubled American airline industry, said Thursday that it would give non-U.S. airlines greater ability to take ownership stakes in American carriers. That would include more ability to exercise some control on operations, although areas such as security would have to remain under the eyes of U.S. directors. The change would apply to countries that grant similar access too U.S. citizens."
November 4, 2005 -- The conclusions and resolutions coming from the 2nd UNI-Americas Postal Conference have been posted on the UNI web site.
November 4, 2005 -- Bloomberg has reported that "A takeover of Belgium's postal service by Post Danmark A/S is winning support among customers tired of lost packages and late deliveries. The mailmen are less happy. ``The way of working in Denmark isn't the same as in Belgium,'' said Andre Blaise, head of Belgium's Christian union for French-speaking postal workers, in an interview in Brussels. ``There would be reactions from unions'' should managers try to change work rules, he said."
November 4, 2005 -- Business Mailers Review has reported that:
Business Mailer's Review is an award-winning, independent biweekly newsletter covering issues of importance to the business mailer. It is regularly cited as among the best sources of postal information. For subscription information, check the BMR web site.
November 4, 2005 -- The latest copy of the National Association of Postmasters of the U.S. electronic governmental affairs newsletter is available on the NAPUS web site.
November 4, 2005 -- From the White House: "The President intends to nominate Mark Acton, of Kentucky, to be a Commissioner of the Postal Rate Commission, for the remainder of a six-year term expiring October 14, 2010. Mr. Acton currently serves as Special Assistant to the Chairman for the United States Postal Rate Commission. Prior to this, he served as Staff Director for the Counsel's Office of the Republican National Committee. Mr. Acton received his bachelor's degree from the University of Louisville."
November 4, 2005 -- The Washington Post has reported that "The Senate approved sweeping deficit-reduction legislation last night that would save about $35 billion over the next five years by cutting federal spending on prescription drugs, agriculture supports and student loans, while clamping down on fraud in the Medicaid program. The Senate bill, which passed 52 to 47, is the first in nearly a decade to tackle the growth of entitlement spending, the part of the federal budget that rises automatically based on set formulas and population changes. Yesterday's action is part of an effort by congressional Republicans to demonstrate fiscal discipline after widespread complaints of profligate spending on Capitol Hill." And this was followed by yet another Washington Post piece which reported that "The military services have been ordered to cut $32.1 billion from their projected spending plans for the next five years as part of government-wide belt-tightening forced by rising war costs, a growing deficit and hurricane-relief spending." [Now, is there anyone still out there who doubts for a second that any postal bill which finds its way to the President's desk will be stripped of EVERY provision that could possibly add to the federal deficit? It's time to get real, folks. The Postal Service will not get a dime of any escrow money for discretionary use. To continue to act as if we believed anything else were true is sheer folly...if not downright stupid.]
November 4, 2005 -- The Wall Street Journal has reported that "On the heels of Google Inc.'s controversial move to scan copyrighted books and make them searchable, Internet retailer Amazon.com Inc. is taking a page out of a different digital book. The Internet retailer said it will introduce two programs next year that allow consumers to buy online access to entire books -- and to individual pages or chapters -- giving publishers and authors another way to generate revenue from their content, much like music labels are selling individual songs through Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes."
November 4, 2005 -- And in a similar vein, the Wall Street Journal has reported that "Microsoft Corp. has teamed with the British Library to provide digital copies of books over the Internet, advancing a race with Google Inc. to give Internet users access to a larger body of printed works. Under the agreement, Microsoft will scan and make available online 25 million pages in the library, a Microsoft spokeswoman said. The texts -- equivalent to about 100,000 books -- will be offered through Microsoft's MSN Search service sometime next year. Microsoft will pay the library $2.5 million for the scanning. The British Library -- the United Kingdom's national library -- has about 13 million books. Microsoft and the library have agreed to scan more texts in the future, the spokeswoman said."
November 4, 2005 -- ComputerWorld Today has reported that "Micro-commerce is the next phase of online business models and IT systems will need capabilities to handle smaller, high-volume sales of consumer items. Advertisement During 2006, consumers will spend more 'loose change' online for purchases of small, downloadable items like ring tones and pictures paid for through PayPal accounts or similar services. The micro-commerce element of mobile telephony will leach into the online business model by 2006, according to Gartner senior vice president Bob Hayward, who says consumers will expect to pay for small services or products online in a similar way."
November 4, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "DHL has launched the DHL Danzas Air & Ocean Consolidated Distribution Service (CDS), a new service that allows customers to reduce brokerage fees and shorten delivery times for U.S. imports from Asia, Europe and Latin America. During the pilot stage of the service with U.S.-based customers, CDS reduced cycle times and improved time-to-market; eliminated warehousing and distribution centre costs; and reduced inventory carrying costs and customs clearance costs for several large DHL shipping customers, while providing point-to-point tracking services. DHL is now offering the service to all high-volume U.S. importers looking to streamline their supply chain."
November 4, 2005 -- Ireland Online has reported that "The National Implementation Body (NIB) is expected to call both sides in the An Post dispute to further talks today in a last-ditch effort to avert strike action at the company. The Communications Workers Union is planning to take action in pursuit of pay rises due under the Sustaining Progress agreement. Its strike notice is due to expire tonight. The Labour Court has ruled that the wage rises should be linked to reform of work practices."
November 4, 2005 -- According to the Irish Examiner, "ONE postman will earn 86,500 this year, when his overtime pay is included. The top ten earning post workers will earn nearly 800,000 among them by the year s end, according to figures obtained by The Irish Examiner. The figures highlight what management has called the overtime monster in An Post, which today faces its first nationwide strike in years."
November 4, 2005 -- From MarketWire: "PassMark Security and PostX have integrated their solutions to deliver a comprehensive, end-to-end security solution for email and all Web-site interactions between financial institutions and their customers. The system combines PassMark's secure authentication with PostX's secure Messaging Application Platform (MAP) to create an integrated framework that ensures privacy, protects identities and re-establishes trust in online banking."
November 4, 2005 -- DM News has reported that:
November 4, 2005 -- The U.S. Postal Service has announced that it has applied to be a Medicare Part D provider, which would enable it to receive the employer s retiree prescription drug subsidy under the Medicare Modernization Act (MMA) of 2003 (P.L. 108-173).
November 4, 2005 -- Business Week has reported that "NCR Corp., a maker of automatic teller machines and point-of-sale terminals, said Thursday it signed a contract with the U.S. Postal Service to be its exclusive retail POS system provider."
November 4, 2005 -- GovExec.com has reported that "The United States Postal Service is nearing completion of a four-year project to install systems that can detect anthrax in the mail."
November 4, 2005 -- Les Echos has reported that "The French committee of credit institutions and investment companies (CECEI) is to examine the request for approval for the future French postal bank, Banque Postale, for the first time on November 10. The postal regulation law passed on May 20 allows La Poste, the French postal service operator, to set up a banking subsidiary by 1 January 2006 at the latest."
November 4, 2005 -- The Periodical Press Association has reported that:
PPA Ireland has received notification of a 12 per cent increase in the periodical rate to take effect from 1 January 2006. An Post has indicated that this consists of seven per cent for last year, when a notified increase did not materialise and an additional five per cent for this year.
Royal Mail has confirmed that an announcement regarding price changes for the existing Presstream tariff will be made on 15 December. Any changes would take effect from April 2006 and would apply until 21 August 2006 when the new Pricing in Proportion (PiP) tariff will be implemented. Royal Mail has confirmed that it will be announcing PiP prices in March 2006.
November 3, 2005 -- According to Purchasing.com, "Michael Parson and his team continue to build a supply chain management strategy for maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) goods and services at the United States Postal Service (USPS). First, they used an eight-step strategic sourcing process to purchase custodial and MRO supplies. Then, they took on purchasing responsibility for some MRO services, namely elevator maintenance and power distribution systems."
November 3, 2005 -- From Business Wire: "APX Logistics, a leading provider of business-to-consumer shipping solutions, is pleased to announce the appointment of Chester A. "Chet" King as Director of Postal Affairs."
November 3, 2005 -- IDTechEx has reported that "Radio Frequency Identification RFID is the reading of information on small devices using radio frequencies or thereabouts. It largely avoids the problems of human error and cost, of misorientation, obscuration and needing to read many at a time that plague barcodes, phosphor dots, print and other alternatives in the postal and courier service. It is an enabling technology of incredibly broad applicability. That is why RFID is already used in the postal and courier service for secure access by people to vehicles and secure areas, secure access of vehicles to yards, location of parcels, conveyances, trailers and much more besides. RFID monitors the performance of the letter post, matches letters to postal boxes to prevent errors and records when and how much a sensitive package has been overheated in transit. In Sweden it is the basis of smart packages that record time of tampering and theft and leads to arrests."
November 3, 2005 -- Transport News Network has reported that "Amtrak Express Parcels has come up with a novel way to add greeting and other messages to the outside of parcels. Each parcel can have its own personal message incorporated within a box on the barcode tracking label with customers entering the message when booking a parcel delivery online. The message can be for an individual parcel, such as a personal gift, or as standard messages that change according to parcel contents or the recipient. The label personalisation has been made possible following developments by NetDespatch, whose web services underpin Amtrak's Online Despatch System.Using the web, Amtrak barcode parcel labels can be produced on any printer at any location, irrespective of where the booking is being made."
November 3, 2005 -- According to the Associated Press, the office of "U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman released an 87-page report Wednesday on Japan's regulatory improvements. The report also requested that Japan make sure that as it privatizes its sprawling postal system, starting in 2007, U.S. companies are not discriminated against."
November 3, 2005 -- RTE News has reported that "The Government's partnership monitor, the National Implementation Body, is considering submissions from both sides in the An Post dispute in an effort to avert a strike at the company. The NIB will try to broker a solution to the current dispute, which threatens to cause widespread disruption to the postal service from Monday."
November 3, 2005 -- DM News has reported that:
November 3, 2005 -- ThisDay has reported that "it seems it has come to the turn of the postal sector to partake in the much-touted Nigerian government reforms programme. In recent newspaper advertisements, the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), the secretariat of the National Council on Privatisation (NCP), is asking qualified firms and organisations to apply for advisory functions. Specifically, the BPE asked advisers to apply to assist it draft a new national postal sector policy, advise and assist the government in reviewing and developing/designing a new harmonised legal and regulatory framework for the postal sector to allow for private participation and restructuring of NIPOST."
November 3, 2005 -- The Ottawa Citizen has reported that "Veterans have won a battle far removed from the front lines of Europe, Asia and Africa. They've gained the right to sell poppies inside Canada Post offices across the country."
November 2, 2005 -- Le Monde has reported that "Chronopost, the parcel-service division of the French post office, La Poste, has postponed last Monday's presentation of its restructuring plan until November 8 in response to pressure from the trade unions."
November 2, 2005 -- Catalog Success has offered some ideas on "Control Direct Selling Expenses."
November 2, 2005 -- As the Rhinelander Daily News has noted, "Two cents here, two cents there. It all adds up, for both business owners and the public alike. The latest group interested in getting a piece of your bottom line is the Postal Service."
November 2, 2005 -- According to the U.K.'s postal regulator, Postcomm, "competition is starting to deliver."
November 2, 2005 -- Union Network International has reported that "UNI Postal affiliate the Communications' Workers Union (CWU) in Ireland announced that an overwhelming majority of An Post employees had voted to mandate the union for industrial action to secure basic cost-of-living increases due under Sustaining Progress two years ago."
November 2, 2005 -- According to the Quad-City Times, "Sen. Grassley puts cents into postal spending."
November 2, 2005 -- The Financial Times has reported that "Royal Mail should cut more costs rather than rely on a government bail-out to address its 4bn pensions deficit, the industry regulator has signalled. The tough stance adopted by Postcomm, less than a month before finalising crucial four-year price controls, suggests the state-owned postal operator is heading for a showdown with the regulator."
November 2, 2005 -- The Postal Service's Office of the Inspector General has published its report on savings that might be possible from changes to the USPS' current policy regarding workers compensation. The report said in part:
"Our overall objective was to analyze positive and negative issues concerning the Postal Service s participation in the DOL s OWCP. We focused on whether the OWCP program currently utilized by the Postal Service could be replaced with a less costly workers compensation program by analyzing issues and benchmarking with private companies and nonfederal government agencies. On the positive side, savings would most likely occur if the Postal Service had its own workers compensation program. These savings would be in the areas of Continuation of Pay (COP) elimination and a 3-day waiting period, reduced OWCP administrative fees and Postal Service third-party administrators, physician selection, buyout options, mandatory retirements, compensation limits and dependency status, and accountability controls. A negative issue was potential resistance by the Postal Service s four major employee unions1 if employee compensation benefits are reduced. In addition, separating the Postal Service from OWCP would require legislative change."
November 2, 2005 -- As Direct has noted, "Mailer groups pretty much expected the Postal Rate Commission's recommended decision Wednesday to raise postal rates, even though the PRC proposed raising some rates more than the 5.4% the U.S. Postal Service asked for. As for reform? Well, the patience of even the most ardent postal reform supporters could wear thin. I think Senator Collins is pretty sick of this now and has other things she wants to do, said Del Polito, warning that if postal reform dies in this Congress, we probably won't see anything before the end of this administration in 2008.
November 2, 2005 -- The Malta Independent has reported that "Joseph Gafa has been appointed chief executive officer of Maltapost as of yesterday. A certified public accountant by profession, Mr Gafa has occupied a number of senior management positions with Maltapost, and within the European postal sector."
November 2, 2005 -- From PR Web: "PeerConnect and Striata partner to bring groundbreaking technology to Electronic Bill Presentment & Payment (EBPP)."
November 2, 2005 -- As the Washington Post has noted, "A Senate bill that would overhaul the U.S. Postal Service appears stalled by a dispute over how to ensure that big and small mailers fairly share the burden of mail costs. Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Christopher S.Bond (R-Mo.) are at odds over the arcane issue of how to set "fair and equitable" rates, and Bond has put a hold on a bill sponsored by Collins that would revamp postal operations."
November 2, 2005 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal), published by the MRU Consultancy, has reported that:
While Deutsche Post and its competitors are preparing for an open postal market, political forces could be throwing a spanner in the works. Politicians in Berlin and Bonn are openly discussing a further reduction of the reserved area. Instead of a complete opening, standard letters weighing over 20 grams could become subject to competition.
At 1.9bn euros turnover Sweden's Posten AB achieved only a minor increase on last year's figures during the first nine months of the year. CEO Erik Olsson said mail volumes had dropped and were only just compensated for by an increased turnover for direct mail (+ 6%).
Finland's government-owned post Suomen Posti Oy was able to increase its turnover slightly during this year's first nine months. However, the 935.7m euros (+6%) turnover must be compared with losses in operating result (52.8m euros, -17%) and profit (39.3m euros, -14%). The Finnish post holds higher fuel prices and other production costs responsible for the decline.
Posten Norge AS reports record figures for this year's first nine months and the best results for this particular period since the company was founded in 1996. The turnover went up by 11.9% to1.83bn euros, although volumes grew much less significantly.
Following three regional elections in Austria, Vice-Chancellor Gorbach is determined to speed up the post's IPO.
Dansk Fagpresse, the association of publishers of specialist publications in Denmark, has asked the competition authority Konkurrencestyrelsen to investigate Post Danmark's distribution prices. The publishers claim the post is using its dominant market position to impose undue price increases for the distribution of weekly and monthly publications.
Spain's Correos intends to increase its turnover by 5% to 1.97bn euros next year. Additional post offices would be opened and modernisation of the post and its IT facilities in particular be carried out next year at a cost of around 253m euros.
According to press reports, Norway's new government could stop the postal market liberalisation already decided and scheduled for 1 January 2007. "We will reconsider the matter", said the new transport Secretary Liv Signe Navarsete in an interview with the daily "Stavanger Aftenblad".
Privatisation of Romania's national post company CNPR will take at least 2 years and is due to be completed by the end of 2008. The Ministry for Communication and IT stated in a press release that the next step would see the post being transformed into a plc and increasing its own capital through the sale of shares at the stock exchange.
Poste Italiane is at the centre of conflict surrounding privatisation and has also become embroiled in general political unrest in the country. Italian trade unions have called for a general 4-hour strike on 12 November in protest against Prime Minister Berlusconi's cuts in social services.
Wage negotiations between the Swiss trade unions Kommunikation and transfair and Schweizerische Post were suspended last week. A spokesperson for the post confirmed that the parties were in disagreement over the duration of a wage increase.
The Brazilian corruption scandal has had a sudden and temporary ending.
The Deutsche Post subsidiary DHL is obviously making every effort to reduce its US losses. In order to attract greater consignment volumes, DHL has resorted to the discount knack.
November 2, 2005 -- From the Federal Register: "The Postal Service proposes that mailers use two bands to secure all bundles of presorted rate flat-size mail and irregular parcels that are not shrinkwrapped. This proposal would remove the option to secure bundles up to 1 inch thick with only one band. DATES: We must receive your comments on or before December 2, 2005."
November 2, 2005 -- LETA has reported that "The Public Services Regulatory Commission's council today approved new postal tariffs for the "Latvijas Pasts" (LP) company, as Inese Krumina, acting head of the company's public relations department, told LETA. The new tariffs will come into force January 1 next year."
November 2, 2005 -- According to the Irish Sun, "In the wake of Pakistan s devastating earthquake, DHL Middle East, the world s leading express logistics provider, takes the lead to ensure critical aid shipments reach affected areas in Pakistan. After tremendous support from the region, DHL Middle East has this week shipped more than 240 tonnes of tents, heaters, blankets, food, water purification units, generators and medical supplies to Islamabad where the relief aid has been distributed to effected areas."
November 2, 2005 -- The DM Bulletin has reported that:
November 2, 2005 -- The latest issue of the
PostCom Bulletin is available online. Special Rate Case Issue!! Hey! You've not been getting the weekly PostCom Bulletin--the best postal newsletter anywhere...bar none? Send us by email your name, company, company title, postal and email address. Get a chance to see what you've been missing.
November 2, 2005 -- From the PR Newswire:
November 2, 2005 -- A POSTMASTERS group is attempting to mount a management buyout of the main postal network in a move that would split the Royal Mail group, The Times has learnt. The Postmasternetwork, which claims 7,500 members, this week will meet potential American investors to try to secure up to 150 million of funding to buy the 14,500-strong chain of loss- making sub-post offices. The group has held meetings with the Department of Trade and Industry already to press the idea.
November 2, 2005 -- As the Daily Star has noted, "It's not enough to place campaign flyers in mailboxes, a political candidate must obey the law and buy a stamp. Illegal circulation of political literature is a rare offense, but recently complaints have surfaced that someone has placed campaign literature directly into mailboxes in Grenada, without paying for postage and sending it through the Post Office."
November 2, 2005 -- As the Newspaper Association of America has noted, "In a recent survey by Kannon Consulting Inc. in Chicago, 70 percent of traditional newspaper advertisers said ZIP code-level zoning was what they considered the minimum required level of preprint distribution. When asked about their preferred level of zoning granularity, 67 percent said they would like to see zones at the sub-ZIP level or finer."
November 2, 2005 -- The Associated Press has reported that "The Postal Service has drastically curtailed a moving-expense bonus program for senior executives, ending payments of up to $25,000 that allowed officials to pocket thousands of unspent dollars. In one instance, an executive received $50,000. The bonuses, which supplement government payments for housing assistance and shipment of household goods, will now be capped at two weeks' salary. For senior executives earning about $165,000, the limit would slightly exceed $6,300."
November 2, 2005 -- The Tide has reported that "The CEO of Mtel, Mr Edwin Momife has described the death of the Postmaster General of the Federation, Alhaji Abubakar Argungu, in the ill-fated Bellview plane as a tragic loss to the postal industry and the nation at large. The incident was a terrible blow on the nation s postal industry because of the unprecedented giant strides NIPOST had recorded during his tenure." See also The Tide's acknowledgement of his accomplishments.
November 2, 2005 -- Le Figaro has reported that "La Poste, the French national postal services group, is launching the first of its revamped post offices today in Trelaze in the Maine-et-Loire. In total, the group plans to modernize 3,500 post offices nationwide by the end of 2008, for an investment of 770m euros. The new post offices are designed to be more attractive, particularly to younger people, and better located. They will be based on automated machines that can provide an estimated 60 per cent of services required. The modernization programme is seen as vital to the future of La Poste, which is increasingly exposed to competition."
November 2, 2005 -- Hoovers has reported that:
UPS, the world's leading package delivery company, anticipates repeated double-digit growth in Thailand next year as the government creates a friendlier climate for the domestic business community. The government's open-skies policy as well as the reduction of trade barriers would prove favourable for UPS's growth in 2006, he said.
UPS has reshuffled its management structure in China.
November 1, 2005 -- The U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors will meet Monday to act on the PRC recommended decision. Other actions:
November 1, 2005 -- For those who haven't noticed, there is an error in two of the PRC rate schedules: 321B and 323B (Std Automation and Std Nonprofit Automation). They have the automation letter categories as "Basic, 3/5 digit, 3-digit, and 5-digit" but these should be the same as the existing categories of "Mixed-AADC, AADC, 3-digit and 5-digit". The rates shown are correct if you just line them up in that order... They are going to issue an errata to make the correction.
November 1, 2005 -- The Postal Rate Commission has released its recommended decision on the 2005 postal rate case (Docket No. R2005-1), which can be obtained from the PRC web site. [Alternative link: Rate Decision] Postal Rate Commission George Omas noted that the USPS' request was extraordinary. The USPS requested no contingency reserve, and asked that the increases requested be treated as institutional costs. The PRC did not recommend an across-the-board 5.4% increase in that there are certain rates that deviate from the USPS' original request. For instance, Media Mail rates will rise by 12.7%. In most other regards, however, the increase will be 5.4%. The following are some of the key charts contained within the PRC's decision:
First-Class Mail (Letters 5.2% Cards 5.0%, Priority Mail 5.4%, Express Mail 5.5% )
You also will find on this site, specific postal rate charts with percentage comparisons prepared especially for PostCom members.
November 1, 2005 -- The U.S. Postal Service has announced that "The Governors will review the PRC s Opinion and Recommended Decision and, if approved, the Board of Governors will set the implementation date for the new prices and fees."
November 1, 2005 -- The UPS Store and Mail Boxes Etc. franchisees today launched a U.S. campaign to raise $1 million for the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation. More than 4,300 locations will be selling $1 donation cards, now through Friday, Dec. 23. All proceeds will go to local Toys for Tots programs.
November 1, 2005 -- From the U.S. Newswire: "DHL, the world's leading logistics and express delivery company, today announced that in partnership with Neighborhood Postal Centers, a national network of independent shipping centers, it will sponsor a nationwide Thanksgiving food drive to collect canned goods, non- perishable food items, and cash donations to benefit America's Second Harvest - The Nation's Food Bank Network, the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States."
November 1, 2005 -- The Kodiak Daily Mirror has reported that "Military families preparing care packages for troops serving abroad can request a free kit from the U.S. Postal Service. The kits, available by calling (800)610-8734, include 10 Priority Mail boxes, five Mili-Pacs a roll of Priority Mail tape and 10 customs forms and envelopes. A Mili-Pac is a Tyvek envelope with detailed addressing information designed to help customers put the right address on the packages. The Postal Service designed the kit based on the most popular requests for materials to send care packages abroad."
November 1, 2005 -- WorldNetDaily has reported that "A holy war of sorts is breaking out in Britain over a Christmas stamp which some say is offensive to members of the Hindu faith, purportedly showing Hindus worshipping Jesus Christ. The stamp features a man and woman with Hindu markings adoring the baby Jesus, and is one of six mother-and-child stamps debuting today. Hindus are now demanding Royal Mail, the British postal system, withdraw the controversial depiction."
November 1, 2005 -- According to the Edinburgh Evening News, "SCOTLAND'S postal watchdog will hold a free seminar in the Capital this month to prepare people for major changes to sending letters. Postwatch Scotland will start a country tour in Edinburgh on November 29. The seminars are designed to help small businesses, voluntary and public sector organisations get ready for Royal Mail's introduction of Pricing in Proportion, the biggest change to postal services since the introduction of the Penny Black."
November 1, 2005 -- The Irish Times has reported that "Minister for Communications Noel Dempsey will today resume attempts to broker talks in the An Post dispute, as Friday's strike deadline looms with attitudes on both sides hardening. The Minister has cancelled a five-day trip to Washington so that he can continue trying to persuade union leaders and management to meet under his chairmanship or that of an agreed third party. But union leaders declined an invitation to talks on Friday last and there was no sign over the weekend of a compromise emerging."
November 1, 2005 -- According to Business World, "The Communications Workers Union (CWU) has said that it now seems likely that there will be a nationwide strike at An Post this Friday. An Post management said that it is now preparing contingency plans and that "the situation could not be more serious"."
November 1, 2005 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "TNT has released its latest quarterly financial results. They show that its Mail and Express divisions continue to perform well. However Logistics is still proving problematical."
November 1, 2005 -- Reality TV Magazine has reported that "FOX, Lions Gate Television and Full Circle Entertainment, in cooperation with the United States Postal Service, have struck a deal for an hour-long unscripted holiday special, entitled Dear Santa, to premiere on FOX December 9 at 8:00pm ET/PT. The announcement was made today by Ed Wilson, President Fox Television Network; Kevin Beggs, President, Programming and Production, Lions Gate Television; Robert Riesenberg, President and CEO of Full Circle Entertainment; and John E. Potter, Postmaster General and CEO of the U.S. Postal Service."
November 1, 2005 -- The DM Bulletin has reported that "The U.K. Post Office has chosen glossy publisher Conde Nast to create its new customer magazine, which will have a circulation of 3m and is aimed at the 28m people who visit one of its 16,000 branches each week."
November 1, 2005 -- According to the Associated Press, "--A dispute between greeting card giant Hallmark Cards Inc. and outdoor retailer L.L. Bean is holding up sweeping legislation that would make the U.S. Postal Service more competitive in the age of e-mail."
November 1, 2005 -- As the New York Times has noted, "YOU could argue that reading a newspaper online is much like reading one offline, but one thing is unmistakably missing from the Web: when you log on, an advertising circular does not fall into your lap. Until now, that is. Gannett, one of the nation's biggest newspaper publishers, said it would introduce a new service on its newspaper Web sites next month that displays banner ads that readers can expand into a virtual version of the weekly local circulars so familiar to offline newspaper readers."
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