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The US Postal Service loses billions

The Postal Service ended its third fiscal quarter with a net loss of $5.2 billion.

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US Postal Service letter carrier Juan Padilla puts letters into a mailbox as he walks his delivery route on December 5, 2011 in San Francisco, California. (Justin Sullivan /Getty Images)

After reporting a $5.2 billion loss, the impoverished US Postal Service warned Congress that unless it receives significant help, the agency will be unable to borrow money in the fall. 

The Hill reports the agency's net loss this fiscal year totaled $11.6 billion. 

The Postal Service does not receive tax dollars to support its operations, but instead depends on stamp sales and income from its services.

The US Postal Service website had this to say:

“We remain confident that Congress will do its part to help put the Postal Service on a path to financial stability. We will continue to take actions under our control to improve operational efficiency and generate revenue by offering new products and services to meet our customers changing needs."

“Moving forward with our business plan will make the Postal Service financially self-sustaining, provide a platform for future growth and preserve our mission to provide secure, reliable and affordable universal delivery services for generations to come.”

Reuters reports the majority of the $5.2 billion third quarter loss was the result of money the agency needed to set aside for its retiree payments. 

The agency's trouble is also partly due to Americans foregoing mail and communicating online.  

USPS defaulted in August on what Reuters said was a "scheduled $5.5 billion payment to the U.S. Treasury for future retiree healthcare costs." 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120809/the-us-postal-service-loses-billions