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Business of the Holidays

UPS, FedEx Move to Avoid Delivery Debacle Repeat

FedEx, UPS cap air express deliveries 0:21

United Parcel Service Inc and FedEx Corp started limiting air express deliveries after a last-minute increase in shipped packages caused some retailers to exceed agreed-upon limits, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people briefed on the situation.

This year, both UPS and FedEx held some retailers to their volume commitments during the final shopping days before Christmas, aiming to avoid a repeat of a fiasco last year, the Journal reported. "As we've moved through the peak season there have been some shifts in demand and customer needs as a result of slowdowns at the West Coast ports," said Bonny Harrison, a spokeswoman for FedEx. Harrison added that these changes resulted in some caps on volume. A UPS spokeswoman said that company's operations were going as planned.

Both UPS and FedEx had previously told Reuters that if unplanned package volumes threatened to overload their systems, they could refuse to take them. A late spike in demand last year caused by last-minute online promotions plagued express delivery companies. Some 2 million express packages were left stranded by delivery companies on Christmas Eve, according to shipment-tracking software developer ShipMatrix Inc.

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-- Reuters