America’s publishers and direct marketers have welcomed news that a hike in postal rates could be delayed until 2006.

The US Postal Service revealed it may be able to keep prices at current levels for the next four years after discovering it needs to allocate far less than expected for pension fund contributions. Its calculations are subject to approval by Congress.

Postmaster general John Potter previously anticipated a rate rise in 2004.

The Magazine Publishers of America hailed the “excellent financial news”, while the Direct Marketing Association announced it was “pleased”.

Declared DMA president/ceo H Robert Wientzen: “We will work with the Postal Service and others to effect necessary changes which will ensure that the American mailing public receives the lowest possible mailing rates.”

He warned that the USPS requires major reform, otherwise the postponement of rate rises will provide only temporary relief.

Data sourced from:; additional content by WARC staff