OfCom chastises Royal Mail for stamp price hike

OfCom has chastised Royal Mail for raising its stamp prices above the cap the regulator set in 2012. Royal Mail has issued an apology.

Late last week Royal Mail announced that it was to raise its second class stamp prices to 61p, which breaks the current OfCom cap of 60p. The cap should remain in place until 1st April this year.

In 2012, OfCom permitted Royal Mail to increase the retail price of its stamps by 14p. From there the regulator said that the postal operator could only increase its stamp prices in line with the Consumer Price Index measure of inflation. This year the theoretical cap would be 60.65p for a second class stamp.

Late last year OfCom said that the price increases would continue at CPI until 2024, after raising them to 65p from April 1.

By way of apology, Royal Mail has offered to pay the extra money to charity.

Royal Mail said in a statement: “Due to an error on our part, our new 2nd class stamp price of 61p will be 1p above the existing regulatory price cap for seven days. We apologise for this mistake.

“We are putting this right by donating the revenue we expect to collect from the error – around £60,000 – to our chosen charity, Action for Children.

“We informed our regulator about the mistake as well.”

A spokesman for Ofcom said: “We’re very concerned that Royal Mail has exceeded the price cap and we are urgently seeking clarification from the company over how this happened.”

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