The Coventry Evening Telegraph is being penalised by the Audit Bureau of Circulations because it neglected to print the price on its front cover on five occasions in recent months.
It means that sales on the affected days will not count towards the paper’s total figure.
A spokesman for parent company Trinity Mirror said: “In terms of actual sales the paper has been performing very well compared with recent trends. However, this won’t be reflected in the upcoming ABCs as we have had to discount some figures following the omission of the cover price on certain editions.
“We have introduced new procedures to ensure there is no repeat of the problem – a problem which unfortunately will disguise a very positive underlying trend for the paper.”
In a separate development, Coventry Newspapers’ managing director, Martin Gower, is to leave the business to “pursue other business interests”.