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The Simpsons Stamps Were a Costly Dud for the USPS

The ailing U.S. Postal Service made a not-great bet on The Simpsons stamps in 2009 and 2010, printing up 1 billion and finding more than two thirds of them eventually unsold to the tune of a $1.2 million loss in printing costs. That seems like peanuts compared to the $5.2 billion loss the USPS reported for the third quarter of 2011, but estimating that Homer and co. would drastically outsell 1993's bestselling commemorative Elvis Presley stamp still wasn't the wisest move.