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Trump administration releases Postal Service review after Amazon attacks

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Recommends changes to package pricing

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

The Treasury Department today released a 70-plus-page report on the Postal Service’s finances, part of a task force review ordered by the Trump administration after the president publicly bashed mail deals between the service and Amazon.

The review, a detailed examination of the service’s “unsustainable” business model, credited e-commerce platforms with contributing to an increase in package volume and revenue, but said future increases in package delivery won’t be enough to offset financial problems. Without financial changes, “the USPS’s long-term sustainability is in question.”

The report details issues well beyond package pricing deals, which the president has used as an argument against Amazon. The task force review did, however, say “packages have not been priced with profitability in mind,” and recommend changing prices on package deliveries “to generate income rather than maximize volume.”

The report strikes a tone that’s at odds with the rhetoric from the White House earlier this year. Amazon, and its particular dealings with the Postal Service, are not mentioned in the report, but the decision to review the Postal Service’s finances followed heated comments from President Trump about the company. In a March tweet, Trump said Amazon had been able to “use our Postal System as their Delivery Boy,” and criticized the company’s tax practices. The tweet followed an Axios report that said Trump was “obsessed” with the company.

The report suggests the Postal Service’s financial woes are much more complex than any one deal. Still, Trump has already reportedly considered increasing postal service rates on Amazon, and what action the administration will take based on the report is not yet clear.