Daily broadsheets continue to slide

The looming international crisis over Iraq has done little to stem the fall in sales of the broadsheet nationals.

Since The Daily Telegraph renounced bulks, the sector has suffered and is down more than 5 per cent on the same six month period a year ago. Not one daily broadsheet can show a year-on-year rise.

Only two quality dailies are up on January. The Financial Times came back strongly with a 4.6 per cent monthly rise and The Independent was up by around 550 copies a day. The Daily Telegraph must hope that its latest revamp will be enough to stop sales dropping below 900,000. It is showing a year-on-year decline of nearly six per cent.

In the daily popular market, the Daily Star recorded another month-on-month rise and was up an impressive 27 per cent year on year.

The Sun and Daily Mirror were both down on January although The Sun is up 3.9 per cent year on year. In the daily mid-market both the Express and Mail also showed a sales decline on January as did the Sunday Express and The Mail on Sunday.

Richard Desmond’s new launch, the Daily Star Sunday showed the biggest fall among the Sunday redtops, down 9.1 per cent on January.

The Sunday qualities are performing better than their daily counterparts. The Observer, despite upsetting some of its readers with a pro-war stance on Iraq, was up 1.7 per cent month on month. There were also rises for The Sunday Times, Independent on Sunday and Scotland on Sunday.

Sales of the Evening Standard were up by more than 4,000 on January. One theory is the paper is benefiting from London’s congestion charge which is forcing more commuters on to public transport and within reach of the Standard’s army of newspaper sellers.

By Jon Slattery

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