ABC: Chron circulation down again

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The Audit Bureau of Circulations has released its latest figures, and once again the news is not very good for the local Hearst daily (or very many other newspapers):

Average paid weekday circulation of the nation’s 20 largest newspapers for the six-month period ending in March, as reported Monday by the Audit Bureau of Circulations. The percentage changes are from the comparable year-ago period.

1. USA Today, 2,278,022, up 0.2 percent

2. The Wall Street Journal, 2,062,312, up 0.6 percent

3. The New York Times, 1,120,420, down 1.9 percent

4. Los Angeles Times, 815,723, down 4.2 percent

5. New York Post, 724,748, up 7.6 percent

6. New York Daily News, 718,174, up 1.4 percent

7. The Washington Post, 699,130, down 3.5 percent

8. Chicago Tribune, 566,827, down 2.1 percent

9. Houston Chronicle, 503,114, down 2 percent

As always, we’ll be looking forward to seeing Chronicle publisher Jack Sweeney’s spin in the Chron press-release-posing-as-news article that should follow shortly.

UPDATE (05-02-2007): And here’s Sweeney’s spin:

The Houston Chronicle’s daily circulation dipped 2 percent and Sunday circulation declined 2.2 percent, but the Chronicle remained the seventh-largest daily metropolitan newspaper and is eighth-largest on Sunday, the Audit Bureau of Circulations reported.

The Chronicle’s daily circulation is 503,114, and Sunday circulation is 677,425.

Nationally, weekday circulation at U.S. daily newspapers fell 2.1 percent in the latest six-month reporting period. Comparable figures for Sunday newspapers fell 3.1 percent, according to the Newspaper Association of America, an industry group.

Chronicle Publisher and President Jack Sweeney said most of the decline in Houston was in “other paid circulation,” which includes third-party sales sponsored by advertisers, hotels and educational programs.

“We needed to shift the bulk of our resources to the all-important home-delivery area, and we had our second straight gain on Sunday,” Sweeney said. “There’s still plenty of demand for a compelling local newspaper delivered to your door every day.”

No author is listed on the reporting. Presumably, no decent reporter wanted to be associated with what amounts to a press release posing as news.

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Kevin Whited
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