Washington, D.C.---The U.S. Postal Service today raised the cost of a first class stamp from 45 to 46 cents.
The increase, which affects more than two million stamp collectors in the United States, was approved by the Postal Regulatory Commission in November amid grave concerns about the agency's future solvency.
Once a cabinet-level department of enormous political clout, the Postal Service is an independent bureau required by statute to be financially self-sufficient. Although technically a part of the federal government, it receives no public funding except for a $15 billion loan, and relies on sales of stamps and other souvenirs as its primary source of revenue.