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United States Postal Service

United States Postal Service
Company nameUnited States Postal Service|100px
Company typeIndependent agency of the United States government
SloganWe Deliver For You.
FoundedJuly 26, 1775(240 years ago) (see History)
Headquarters475 L'Enfant Plaza SW
Washington, D.C. 20260-2202
Key peoplePatrick R. Donahoe, United States Postmaster General
ProductsFirst-class and domestic mail, logistics
Revenue(-) US$ 67.05 billion (2010)
Operating income(-) US$ −8.37 billion (2010)
Net income(-) US$ −8.51 billion (2010)
Employees574,000 (2011)
ParentGovernment of the United States

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The United States Postal Service (also known as USPS, the Post Office or U.S. Mail) is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States. It is one of the few government agencies explicitly authorized by the United States Constitution.

The USPS traces its roots to 1775 during the Second Continental Congress, where Benjamin Franklin was appointed the first postmaster general. The cabinet-level Post Office Department was created in 1792 from Franklin's operation and transformed into its current form in 1971 under the Postal Reorganization Act.

The USPS has not directly received taxpayer-dollars since the early 1980s with the minor exception of subsidies for costs associated with the disabled and overseas voters. Revenue in the 2000s has been dropping sharply due to declining mail volume, prompting the postal service to look to other sources of revenue while cutting costs to reduce its budget deficit.

The USPS employs over 574,000 workers and operates over 218,000 vehicles. It is the 48th-largest employer in the United States after Wal-Mart and Best Buy.The USPS is the operator of the largest vehicle fleet in the world. The USPS is legally obligated to serve all Americans, regardless of geography, at uniform price and quality. The USPS has exclusive access to letter boxes marked "U.S. Mail" and personal letterboxes in the United States, but still competes against private package delivery services, such as UPS and FedEx.

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