Is the US Postal Service giving Amazon preferred treatment at the expense of other mailers? Investment advisor Josh Sandbuite of Greenhaven Associates thinks so, according to a column he wrote for today’s Wall Street Journal: Continue reading
From the Wall Street Journal:
Amazon.com Inc.’s newly established in-house transportation network is facing a rocky start to its all-important holiday season.
Pilots contracted to deliver Amazon packages began picketing Tuesday because of a longstanding labor dispute, a sign of further potential disruptions through the end of the year at one of Amazon’s two airline partners. Continue reading
CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. – A Cranberry man was shocked when he was told his Amazon Prime package had been delivered to his home, but that his postal carrier had removed it and taken it to the post office, leaving him a bill.
“I checked the mailbox and found an envelope from the U.S. Post Office saying I owe $3.78,” said Scott Puhac. Continue reading
DES MOINES, Iowa — Many of you order items on Prime Day from Amazon last Wednesday and the Des Moines’ Post Office was ready to get those new items to you on-time.
”It gets pretty busy, but you know, they usually get them done pretty quick,” said Anthony Perdue, a carrier for the USPS in Des Moines.
Cheryl Love is the Postmaster for the USPS Des Moines district and she says that the last couple days have been the busiest outside of the holiday season. Continue reading
The Wall Street Journal reports that American consumers are now making a majority of their purchases online rather than in stores.
For the first time, consumers say they bought more of their purchases on the web than in stores, according to an annual survey of more than 5,000 online shoppers by United Parcel Service Inc.
The shoppers now made 51% of their purchases on the web compared with 48% in 2015 and 47% in 2014, according to the survey by UPS and analytics firm comScore Inc. The survey polled shoppers who make at least two online purchases in a three-month period, excluding groceries.
This year, 44% of smartphone users said they made a purchase from their device, up from 41% a year ago. It also helps explain why retailers are having so much trouble adjusting to the new cybershopping era.
The shoppers reported that only 20% of their purchases were made in a store the conventional way.
And who’s driving the increase in online commerce? Amazon of course- the WSJ reports that another survey shows that Amazon is responsible for 60% of the increase.
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — If Amazon.com had its way, every shopper would shop online, and then have that order filled and packaged at fulfillment centers like one in Crafton PA with products to be delivered to your doorstep by Amazon deliverers, instead of the traditional U.S. Postal Service, UPS, or FedEx delivery.
“They really are doing what I would call academically vertical integration. They want to control all steps in the process, and they’re doing that more and more,” Prof. Elaine Luther, a Point Park University business professor, told KDKA money editor Jon Delano on Monday.
A battle is taking shape over home-delivery of groceries that could have an impact on “last-mile” logistics. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will work with Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. to test a grocery-delivery service to compete more directly with Amazon.com Inc., the WSJ’s Sarah Nussauer reports.
Last-mile delivery is proving a hot battleground, with startups like Instacart Inc. and DoorDash Inc. vying for a piece of the market and big players like the U.S. Postal Service, Uber and Amazon looking for ways to operate the business profitably.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Wal-Mart is testing a shipping subscription service similar to Amazon Prime. There’s no suggestion that the US Postal Service would be part of the plan- rather, Wal-Mart would use regional delivery companies to handle the last mile:
As part of the project, Wal-Mart will rely on eight massive e-commerce warehouses around the country, the last of which will be built by year’s end. It will also tap regional carriers to deliver more of its packages, say people familiar with the matter. That is a shift away from FedEx Corp., which handles the bulk of Wal-Mart’s parcels.
Last year Wal-Mart began experimenting with a three-day shipping service for members who pay $50 a year. The program called “ShippingPass” is similar to Prime, Amazon’s $99-a-year service with free two-day shipping.
The Financial Times reports that Amazon is doubling the size of its air cargo fleet. The FT says that the company will lease 20 Boeing 767s from Atlas Air Worldwide for seven years.
It appears that the company will use the expanded fleet to transfer goods between its warehouses rather than to deliver them to consumers. According to the FT, Amazon loses $1 billion each quarter on shipping, and may be attempting to reduce its reliance on logistics partners like FedEx and UPS.
Read the full FT article: Amazon deal doubles size of air cargo fleet – FT.com
The New York Times reports today on the emergence of Amazon as a lobbying force in Washington. One of the ecommerce giant’s goals is “propping up” the US Postal Service:
… nowhere is the company’s push to become a logistics and delivery powerhouse more evident than here in the nation’s capital. Amazon has emerged as one of the tech industry’s most outspoken players in Washington, spending millions on this effort and meeting regularly with lawmakers and regulators.
Amazon has pushed officials to allow new uses for commercial drones, to extend the maximum length of trucks, to improve roads and bridges and to prop up a delivery partner, the United States Postal Service.