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Cost of stamps to go up 2 cents

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  • Price of first-class postage stamp will increase 2 cents to 44 cents in May
  • U.S. Postal Service says increase is tied to rising production costs
  • Customers can buy "Forever Stamps" at current 42-cent rate until May 11
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(CNN) -- Sending a letter will soon be a little more expensive, the U.S. Postal Service announced Tuesday.

Customers can buy "Forever Stamps" at the current 42-cent rate until May 11.

The U.S. Postal Service announced Tuesday a 2-cent increase on first-class stamps, effective May 11.

The price for a first-class mail stamp will increase 2 cents to 44 cents, starting May 11.

The Postal Service said the price increase was necessary because of rising production costs. Under law, the price of stamps is not allowed to rise faster than the U.S. consumer price index, which measures inflation.

According to a written release, the increase will cost the typical family about $3 a year.

"Whether you're a consumer or run a business, the Postal Service continues to offer a good deal during a time when we're all looking for ways to save," said spokesman Stephen M. Kearney.

Until the new prices go into effect, customers can buy "Forever Stamps" at the current 42-cent rate.

"The Forever Stamp is always honored for a 1-ounce letter with no need for additional postage," Kearney said. Mail five days a week?

Billions of the Forever Stamps have been sold since being introduced in April 2007, according to the Postal Service.

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