Royal Mail has seen early signs that domestic parcel volume is growing at a higher level than before the pandemic as consumers continue to be gripped by an online shopping frenzy.
The parcel volume increased by more than a third in the three months to June 2021 compared to the level before Covid.
But compared to the level of lockdown, the domestic parcel volume has decreased by seven percent.
“With consumers no longer trapped in their homes and with few options but to shop online, it was inevitable that the number of packages sent through Royal Mail would slow down,” said Susannah Streeter, senior investment and market analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown.
The stock lost 2.7 percent in early trading, pulling the share price to 516.20.
The logistics and express service group GLS – to which Royal Mail belongs – was able to increase its total turnover by 36.6 percent compared to 2019.
While Royal Mail sales alone grew 13.4 percent from pre-pandemic numbers.
“We are beginning to see evidence that the domestic parcel market is recovering to higher levels than before the pandemic as consumers continue to shop online,” said Keith Williams, chairman of the GLS group.
Parcel volume fell when the UK was first put on lockdown and all non-essential retail stores closed and people had to stay at home – but rose again when online shopping began to surge.
“Future developments in the pandemic, including Covis’ transmission rate, consumer behavior and economic factors such as GDP growth and inflation, will affect future performance,” the group said in a statement.