Out of 25 Biggest Newspapers, Only Wall Street Journal Gains Circ

Dow Jones Outlet's Increase Includes Digital Subscriptions, Up 14.4%

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- In newspapers' discouraging new paid circulation report, showing an average weekday decline of 10.6% from a year earlier, things are both a little better and a little worse than they seem.

Among the 25 largest papers by weekday circulation, 15 reported double-digit drops, and only one, The Wall Street Journal, reported a gain.

And for anyone following the fortunes of newsprint, even that picture renders conditions a bit on the rosy side. As permitted by Audit Bureau of Circulations rules, The Journal's paid circulation report includes subscriptions to its paid website. Excluding 407,002 such electronic subscriptions, up 14.4% from a year earlier, the core print paper actually saw paid circulation decline 2.4%.

But those paid, growing website subscriptions are also one of the brightest spots in Monday's report by the Audit Bureau.

Those online subs mean The Journal is diversifying its circulation revenue, improving its position for the increasingly digital delivery of news and daring other papers with its example to find online circulation revenue one way or another. Newsprint circulation is contracting more quickly than ever, but newspaper publishers don't necessarily have to fade in step.

Average Daily Circulation at the Top 25 U.S. Daily Newspapers
Preliminary Figures as Filed with the Audit Bureau of Circulations
(Subject to Audit)
State Newspaper Name Frequency Total Paid Circulation as of 9/30/09 Total Paid Circulation as of 9/30/08 % Change
NY WALL STREET JOURNAL AVG M (M-F) 2,024,269 2,011,999 0.61%
DC USA TODAY AVG M (M-F) 1,900,116 2,293,312 -17.15%
NY NEW YORK TIMES AVG M (M-F) 927,851 1,000,666 -7.28%
CA LOS ANGELES TIMES AVG M (M-F) 657,467 739,147 -11.05%
DC WASHINGTON POST AVG M (M-F) 582,844 622,714 -6.40%
NY NEW YORK DAILY NEWS AVG M (M-F) 544,167 632,595 -13.98%
NY NEW YORK POST AVG M (M-F) 508,042 625,428 -18.77%
IL CHICAGO TRIBUNE AVG M (M-F) 465,892 516,031 -9.72%
TX HOUSTON CHRONICLE AVG M (M-F) 384,419 448,271 -14.24%
PA PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER AVG M (M-F) 361,480 N/A N/A
NY NEWSDAY AVG M (M-F) 357,124 377,517 -5.40%
CO DENVER POST AVG M (M-F) 340,949 N/A N/A
AZ ARIZONA REPUBLIC AVG M (M-F) 316,874 361,332 -12.30%
MN MINNEAPOLIS STAR TRIBUNE AVG M (M-F) 304,543 322,358 -5.53%
IL CHICAGO SUN-TIMES AVG M (M-F) 275,641 313,174 -11.98%
OH CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER AVG M (M-F) 271,180 305,528 -11.24%
MI DETROIT FREE PRESS (e) AVG M (M-F) 269,729 298,243 -9.56%
MA BOSTON GLOBE AVG M (M-F) 264,105 323,980 -18.48%
TX DALLAS MORNING NEWS AVG M (M-F) 263,810 338,932 -22.16%
WA SEATTLE TIMES AVG M (M-F) 263,588 N/A N/A
CA SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE AVG M (M-F) 251,782 339,430 -25.82%
OR OREGONIAN AVG M (M-F) 249,163 283,325 -12.06%
NJ NEWARK STAR-LEDGER AVG M (M-F) 246,006 316,281 -22.22%
CA SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE AVG M (M-F) 242,705 269,820 -10.05%
FL ST. PETERSBURG TIMES AVG M (M-F) 240,147 268,934 -10.70%
(e) Individually paid core newspaper five-day average reflects a reduced home-delivery schedule
Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations
Top 10 Circulation Gainers -- Newspapers with More Than 50,000 Paid Circulation
Preliminary Figures as Filed with the Audit Bureau of Circulations
(Subject to Audit)
State Newspaper Name Frequency Total Paid Circulation as of 9/30/09 Total Paid Circulation as of 9/30/08 % Change
PA YORK DAILY RECORD AVG M (M-F) 55,370 47,549 16.45%
NY WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY AVG M (M-F) 53,142 46,491 14.31%
MI OAKLAND PRESS AVG M (M-F) 68,067 63,458 7.26%
NV LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL AVG M (M-F) 175,841 165,011 6.56%
TN CHATTANOOGA TIMES FREE PRESS AVG M (M-F) 69,569 68,088 2.18%
UT OGDEN STANDARD-EXAMINER AVG M (M-F) 62,062 60,910 1.89%
CT NEW HAVEN REGISTER AVG M (M-F) 70,559 70,007 0.79%
AL MOBILE PRESS-REGISTER AVG M (M-F) 92,849 92,162 0.75%
NY WALL STREET JOURNAL AVG M (M-F) 2,024,269 2,011,999 0.61%
ND FARGO FORUM AVG M (M-F) 50,131 49,934 0.39%
Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations
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