business news in context, analysis with attitude

• The New York Times writes that recently merged Ahold Delhaize reported Q1 operating profit that was up 12 percent to $602 million (US) and sales that were up three percent to $$17.2 billion "compared with the pre-merger companies' combined profits in the same period last year."

In the US, the story says, Ahold Delhaize pointed to "savings caused by synergies (that) helped offset price deflation, the effect of poor weather and the timing of Easter" as reasons for the positive performance.

• The Associated Press reports that the US Postal Service, having just reported a quarterly loss of $562 million because of "continued erosion in the use of first-class mail as well as expensive mandates for its retiree health care obligations," wants to increase the cost of first class stamp from its current 49 cents.

In addition, the story says, it is seeking "greater regulatory leeway" so it can increase prices beyond the rate of inflation, as currently mandated in federal law.
KC's View: