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‘Forever’ stamp prices going up again on Sunday

Syracuse  |  Geoff Herbert

'Forever' stamps are displayed Thursday, April 9, 2009 in New York.(Kathy Willens | AP)

The United States Postal Service is raising the price of its first-class “forever” postage stamps again.

Forever stamps will go up on Sunday from 47 cents to 49 cents. The rate hike was approved by the Postal Regulatory Commission last year.

Christine Dugas, a spokeswoman for the Postal Service, told MassLive that Saturday will be the last chance for U.S. residents to buy stamps for the lower price. “Forever” stamps, first introduced in 2007, are valid for the cost of sending a letter or postcard forever, regardless of how much rates increase in the future.

Sunday’s 2-cent increase comes after the USPS lowered the price of stamps for the first time in nearly 100 years in April 2016. The price of mailing a 1-ounce or less letter dropped from 49 cents to 47 cents after a surcharge in 2014 sought to recover $4.6 billion lost in 2008 and 2009.

According to USA Today, the price had previously gone up from 47 cents to 49 cents in January 2014. Postmaster General Megan Brennan protested last year’s price reduction, saying, “given our precarious financial condition and ongoing business needs, the price reduction required by the PRC exacerbates our losses.”

R. Richard Geddes, an associate professor of policy analysis and management at Cornell University, told the newspaper that the USPS periodically adjusts the price of stamps to match inflation and increasing costs of postal employee wages, building costs, gas or mail trucks and more.

“It used to be if there was a change in postage and you had old stamps, you put them on with a two-cent stamp or a one-cent stamp,” he explained. “The [‘forever’ stamp] idea was buy their group of stamps right now and that price will hold for the foreseeable future, so you wouldn’t have to put on those one- or two-cent stamp additions.”

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