Who profits from the stamp machines located in stores?

Dear Cecil:

Could you tell me who gets the profit from the stamp machines located in stores — the store or the post office?

Cecil replies:

The stores purchase the machines from private manufacturers; they purchase the stamps from the Postal Service at regular price, and they keep all the profits. It’s perfectly legal. Once you buy a stamp from the Postal Service, you can do whatever you like with it — put it on a letter, use it to paper your bathroom walls, or sell it for a profit.

Send questions to Cecil via cecil@straightdope.com.

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