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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

USPS weighs dive into alternative financial services

As mail volumes continue to plummet, the U.S. Postal Service has proposed that a general-purpose reloadable prepaid card be created that would help to bolster revenues at the struggling quasi government agency. Along with a so-called "Postal Card," small dollar loans and money transfers could be offered to unbanked customers via postal locations, according to a Jan. 27, 2014, USPS report.

"Around the world, financial services are the single biggest driver for new revenue for postal operators, and conditions may be ripe for similar success for the U.S. Postal Service,” the agency said. "If just 10 percent of the money underserved Americans currently spend on alternative financial services were instead spent on more affordable products from the postal service, it could general some $8.9 billion in new revenue."

The report noted that the USPS could become a more affoprdable alternative to payday lenders, which charge substantial fees for their services. The USPS said it would not become a bank or compete with banks, but instead partner with banks for alternative financial services. end of article

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