Weekly US Mail Traffic Report – December 27, 2021
December 28, 2021   Dave Lewis

Is this the bottom? I surely hope so.   

After a bad week the week before, Postal Service delivery performance continued to decline in every category last week. If you’re looking for a bright spot, it declined less than the prior week. We really do hope that this is the peak season bottom.  Eventually, everything returns to the mean, and Postal Service Performance will, too. The question is, how long will it take? Maybe we should wait for it to stop falling before we focus on the rise.

First-Class Letters were on time a dismal 70.16% of the time based on previous delivery service standards, dropping 2 more points from the prior week, and registering a new 6-month low. Even against the new standards, First-Class letters were on time just 80.08% of the time, a half-point drop. This is the sixth straight decline in service for First-Class letters.  Service has been getting worse every week since November 8. First-Class flats were nearly 5 points worse than the prior week with on-time deliveries 77.28% of the time, vs the old standards, and 85.65% vs the new standards. Nearly 11% of First-Class flats were more than 5-days late, and that is against the new bar the Postal Service set for themselves.   

Marketing Mail Letters were on time 91.30% of the time, a slip from the prior week, and year’s worst. Marketing Mail Flats were delivered on time 85.07% of the time, a new record low for the second half of 2021.

Average Intra-SCF delivery time was 2.58 days for Marketing Mail letters, 2.53 days for Marketing Mail flats. Both showed little movement one way or the other, so at least the SCFs seem to be running OK.

Slowest SCFs for Intra-SCF letters, delivery week of 12/20 (10,000 pieces minimum):

Portland, ME:   7.60 days
• Brockton, MA:     5.61 days 
• Green Bay, WI:  5.08 days

The fastest:
• Pensacola, FL:   1.14 days
• Johnstown, PA:    1.37 days
• Las Vegas, NV: 1.41 day

A letter from California to Maryland, on average, took:
·    First-Class: 4.79 days 
·    Marketing Mail: 7.49 days 

All in all, an ugly week, but maybe not the blow-out that 2020 was. January may tell the story.

Map of the week:

Dec 27

Here’s a slowdown in Technicolor. Both maps are the number of days late for a Marketing Mail Letter entered in Hartford, CT. The map on the left is for averages based on six months of data. The map on the left is using just the last two weeks’ data. The mail is later in more places, and by more days.