The Courier, Express, and Postal Observer notes that, "The Postal Service's parcel delivery business have a limited competitive advantage in serving customers that send three types of shipments. Items under 2 or 3 pounds shipped to households. These customers either ship these items themselves or use a consolidator like FedEx Smart Post. Items shipped to rural areas and in particular rural households. Infrequent shippers who find retail services offered by the Postal Service more convenient or lower in cost. The Postal Service serve these markets because they have a competitive advantage due to its ability to deliver light weight items cheaper over the last mile than FedEx or UPS could using its own contractors or employees and due to the advantages that its retail footprint offers both in terms of selling parcel delivery services or offering pick-up of parcels that were not delivered because no one was at home. Unfortunately for the Postal Service these advantages are tenuous. Postal Service competitors are now exploring secure alternative delivery options for households that reduce delivery costs per package by eliminating delivery to the home itself and more importantly eliminating multiple delivery attempts when no one is home when the first attempt is made."
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