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Holyrood factor fails to stem the flow of falling readerships
[3 Edition]
Sunday Herald - Glasgow (UK)
Author: Kemp, Keny
Date: Jan 30, 2000
Start Page: 25
Abstract (Document Summary)

The last yearly circulation estimates of the 20th century figures (our table shows trade estimates only as London-based papers do not produce separately audited figures for Scotland) indicated that while all the city-based broadsheets continued to lose readers - the Press & Journal, hit by the oil downturn, sold 102,000 copies a day (down 3.3%), the Herald just over 100,000 (down 0.5%), with The Courier in Dundee around 94,000 - it was The Scotsman, with an average annual sale of 78,000, which registered the biggest drop. That annual figure looks worse when its final six monthly Audit Bureau of Circulation figures of 1999 are taken into account: these show a sale of 75,757, a drop of nearly 5%. In December, the monthly ABC figures for the paper fell to 72,079, dangerously near the figure where vital national advertising revenues drop away substantially.

Scottish trade estimates for last year show the Times sold 28,000 copies a day (down 2.4%), the Telegraph 24,000 (down 4.4%), the Guardian 14,000 (no change), with the Independent dropping 18% from 1998 to only 7800 a day north of the Border. The Financial Times sells around 8000. But still last year more than 550,000 daily broadsheet papers were sold each day in Scotland. A remarkable achievement.

In the tabloid sector, the struggle is even fiercer. With the Daily Record dropping 3.5% from 675,000 to just more than 650,000 (including sales in Spain and Ireland), while the Daily Express' Scottish sale dropped below the magic 100,000 to 97,760 and even the high-flying Daily Mail fell to 120,000. The advent of the free Metro newspapers in the main cities is likely to hit these figures even more. The Sun was the only winner, adding nearly 10% to more than 409,000 copies per day, up from 374,000. But Sun readers don't buy their favourite journal for its political coverage.

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