Amazon is jumping on the peak surcharge bandwagon for the first time, asking sellers using its Fulfillment By Amazon service to pay 35 cents more per item for goods sold in the U.S. and Canada, running from Oct. 15 to Jan. 14, according to CNBC. This follows peak fee announcements from both FedEx and the U.S. Postal Service.
The U.S. Postal Service plans to hikes rates in January as a hedge against a projected $1 billion inflationary hit on 2022 operating costs. The USPS reported a $459 million third-quarter loss, which excluded a $2.15 billion impact from reform legislation addressing prefunded retiree healthcare. A peak surcharge is also being imposed.
The head of a renegade association of FedEx Ground contractors said those businesses have a strong case to be reclassified as franchisees, which would challenge the very contractor model the unit is built upon. Spencer Patton said many contractors could meet the reclassification test, giving them more legal rights and benefits.
UPS exceeded its Q2 revenue and earnings projections, but lower volume due to consolidation steps, including reducing Amazon packages by contractual agreement, plus the challenged macro picture didn’t resonate well on Wall Street. UPS is also piloting a delivery density program for major retailers through an OMS partnership.
Building operational resilience and developing problem/solution scenarios for your ecommerce fulfillment center prior to a recession will allow you to be nimbler. Have a plan vs. just hoping it doesn’t occur; hope is not a strategy. Include department heads early, identify areas to review and develop a course of action.
Federal prosecutors in New York and OSHA officials are investigating working conditions at Amazon warehouses around the country, according to various media reports, beginning in New York, Orlando and Chicago. The OSHA inspections arose from referrals issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.
Truck drivers blocked the Port of Oakland Monday, protesting California’s AB5 law that requires contractors to be reclassified as employees. The law affects an estimated 70,000 independent truckers, many of whom fear losing their livelihood, according to various media reports. There were similar protests last week in LA/Long Beach.