The price of sending mail with a first-class stamp went up a penny Sunday. It is now 46 cents.  If you bought those Forever stamps, you’re covered. Postcard postage will also rise one cent to 33 cents.  (Wow, I didn’t realize Postcards cost that much.  I am still living in the 5 cent arena). Letters to international destinations will go up to $1.10.  Overall, prices for mailing and shipping services will increase by 4% on average, with priority mail prices rising 6.3%.

The Postal Service has been borrowing billions of dollars from taxpayers to make up for shortfalls caused by a 2006 congressional mandate,  which forced it to pre-fund healthcare benefits for future retirees.

Last year the agency twice defaulted on $11 billion in payments, and it exhausted a $15 billion line of credit from the U.S. Treasury.

The Postal Service has cut back,  closing early at  thousands of post offices -- some are open for only two hours a day. It has also merged some of its plants, reducing  it’s workforce by some 28,000 through retirements and departures by employees who couldn't relocate or take other postal jobs.

They also threatened to get rid of Saturday delivery, but that hasn’t happened in my neighborhood.

Of course all the electronic business we do has led to a decline in first-class mail, face it we just don’t buy as many stamps as we used to.  But if you buy some today be prepared to pay a penny more.

(CNN Money)