July ABCs: Sun and Standard post newspaper circulation gains

The Sun and the London Evening Standard were the only newspapers to post circulation gains in July’s national newspaper figures, released today by ABC.

The Evening Standard recorded a year-on-year increase of 6.28 per cent. The Standard’s sales rose to an average of 292,455 in July. The paper did, however, give away 126,790 copies in July to airlines, hotels and trains – the equivalent of 43 per cent of its entire circulation.

The Sun’s virtually flat sales, meanwhile, made it the best-performing national paper. The Sun rose 0.16 per cent rise year on year to an average sale of 3.12m.

The Financial Times, which has enjoyed several ABC rises this year, fell by 4.89 per cent month on month – a 0.67 per cent yearly drop – to a daily average of 423,575.

The Daily Mirror fared less well with a year-on-year drop of 7.47 per cent and sales of 1.44m, while fellow red-top the Daily Star shed 9.05 per cent of its readership in the past 12 months and sold an average of 738,532 in July.

In the mid-market, the Daily Mail’s sales dropped 5.4 per cent to 2.27m and its rival the Daily Express suffered a 7.4 per cent drop to 735,451 average daily sales.

The Independent fared relatively well in editor Roger Alton’s first month in charge: despite its year-on-year drop of 2.01 per cent, the title posted a month-on-month rise of 0.56 per cent with sales of 235,289. It was one of three dailies with month-on-month rises in July along with the Daily Mail, up 1.77 per cent, and the Daily Star, up 0.72 per cent.

In Scotland, the daily market again suffered a bad month. Johnston Press‘s The Scotsman posted a 9.6 per cent drop year on year and with sales of 49,422 – slipping below the 50,000 mark since June’s ABC figures.

The Herald saw a 7.63 per cent year-on-year drop and sold an average of 61,319 copies in July.

All of the Sunday newspapers also recorded circulation declines in July.

The Sunday Express was hardest hit, recording a 14.93 per cent year-on-year decline in sales to 655,003 copies. The Mail on Sunday sold 2.2m copies, a figure down 4.89 per cent on the July 2007 figure, when it had been boosted by its Prince CD giveaway.

The popular Sundays also suffered in July, with the sector as a whole down 6.25 per cent year on year. The People sold an average of 639,546 copies, 13.23 per cent fewer sales than in July 2007.

The Sunday Sport’s slide also continued in double digits, down 11.99 per cent to 81,554 copies despite a 3.79 per cent rise month on month.

The Daily Star Sunday lost 9.54 per cent compared to last July, selling 388,880 copies.

The News of the World lost 3.38 per cent year on year, to 3.18m.

The Sunday Times performed best overall in the sector with its sales virtually flat. The paper lost less than one per cent year on year and gained slightly since June to 1.16m copies.

The worst performer in the quality sector was the Independent on Sunday, had an average sale 7.36 per cent lower than in July 2007, selling 200,451 copies.

The Scottish quality titles continued to be hard-hit, with the Sunday Herald slipping 11.62 per cent year-on-year to 43,479, while Scotland on Sunday was down 7.04 per cent to 60,058 copies.

Correction: An earlier version of this story, which also appeared inthe 15 August issue of Press Gazette magazine, reported an incorrect circulation figure for the London Evening Standard. The stated figure – 275,186 – was in fact the Evening Standard’s circulation in July 2007. We regret the error.

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