Newspaper Circulation July-Dec 2015

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The ABC’s for the period July to December 2015 were released today and show the continuing decline of newspaper sales in Ireland. The total market has declined by 6.2% over the twelve months, however that’s a smaller decline in overall sales then seen in a few years – if we’re viewing this as a “least worst” scenario. I think we do have to view it in those terms, as I don’t think the populous are going to have a “road to Damascus” experience anytime soon and return to buying the printed word en-masse.

growth rates

Sunday Market

The Sunday market is down a fraction over 7% year on year – a marginal worsening decline on JD’14. The big faller in absolute numbers was the Sunday World dropping 14,502 or 7.6%. The Mail on Sunday dropped over 10,000 copies or 11% in the twelve months. The Sunday Times fell by over 7,000 copies to 79, 831 and the Sunday Independent fell by 7,151 to 211,856 or down 3% – however this is well above the overall market decline. Segwaying on that point: some credit would also have to go to the Sunday Business Post (-3.2%) and The Sun on Sunday actually up a copy or two (0.22%) beating that 7% drop.>

Some of the other percentages are dramatic due in part to a low base for some publications. Singled out for attention is the Daily Star Sunday which fell by over 30% year on year, much of which can be attributed more or less to a partial withdrawal from this market when sales went from 15,143 in September to 9,006 in October. Dramatic falls and sudden falls like that can really only be self inflicted as we saw in (and denied by) the fall in sales of the Daily Record in 2014.

sunday market


In terms of the fattening of figures the Sunday Independent and the Business Post did increase their portion of bulks during the year – The Sunday Independent going from 5.6% to 5.8% in bulks and the Business Post from 3.45% to 4.65%.

sunday all papers

Sunday Newspapers
PublicationJD 2015JD 2014Diff ‘000Diff %
Sunday Independent 211,856219,007-7,151-3.3%
Sunday World175,060189,562-14,502-7.7%
Sunday Business Post32,16233,233-1,071-3.2%
Daily Star Sunday13,10618,753-5,648-30.1%
The Sun (Sunday)55,67555,5511240.2%
Irish Sunday Mirror28,88233,727-4,845-14.4%
The People10,78112,558-1,777-14.2%
Total Tabloid283,503310,151-26,647-8.6%
Sunday Express3,1613,377-216-6.4%
Mail on Sunday85,22695,606-10,381-10.9%
The Observer4,7695,214-445-8.5%
Sunday Telegraph2,2742,481-207-8.3%
Sunday Times79,83187,049-7,217-8.3%
Total Sunday702,783756,118-53,336-7.1%


Morning Market

The Morning market fell by 4% much lower than they Sunday at 7%. The rate of decline is much improved on JD’14 where the morning market was showing an annual rate of decline of over 7%.

In both absolute and percentage declines the Daily Mirror took the biggest hit dropping 6,307 copies or 13.7%. Elsewhere in the tabloid market The Daily Star fell 3,133 copies or 5.4% but The Sun managed to limit its fall to 0.7% or around 400 copies.

morn over

Both the Irish Independent and Irish Times had falls of 3.6%. Tomorrow both titles will be gushing how they now have X or Y number of digital subscribers (I.T. have 7,500 and I.I. have 1,218) and that’s all to be applauded . But for this exercise I’ll focus on the print meal ticket and might possibly return to the Digital sales later. Finally, the Examiner fell by 5.2% or 1,774 copies.


The bulks are rising in the morning market with the Irish Independent now up to 15.5% from 13.27% in JD’14 and the Irish Times at 13.2% up from 11.87%.


The morning market is well covered on this site and there’s no point in re-hashing what’s said on a monthly basis.

Morning Newspapers
PublicationJD 2015JD 2013Diff ‘000Diff %
Irish Independent108,460112,502-4,042-3.6%
Irish Times74,09276,882-2,790-3.6%
Daily Mirror40,31846,625-6,307-13.5%
Irish Daily Star55,40858,541-3,133-5.4%
The Sun58,48258,909-427-0.7%
Daily Express2,6272,715-88-3.2%
Irish Daily Mail46,01945,1398801.9%
Daily Telegraph2,6282,728-99-3.6%
Financial Times2,3092,388-79-3.3%
The Times2,6032,3822219.3%
Total Morning428,101445,956-17,854-4.0%

Cover Prices

Just to briefly look at the cover prices charged by the papers Sunday, Monday to Friday and Saturday editions. You can see that only three papers risked an increase in their RRP over the year.

 Current Cover Price Change Y onY
 SunM-FSat SunM-FSat
The Observer€3.30      
The Sunday Times€3.00      
Sunday Independent €2.90      
Sunday Business Post€2.70      
Sunday World€2.45      
The Sunday Telegraph€2.30      
Sunday Post€2.20   €0.30  
The Mail on Sunday€2.20      
Sunday Mail€1.60      
Sunday Mirror€1.60      
Sunday People€1.60      
Sunday Express€1.50      
Daily Star Sunday€1.00      
The Sun on Sunday€1.00      
Financial Times €3.00€3.50    
The Guardian €2.00€2.90  €0.20€0.20
Irish Independent €2.00€2.30    
Irish Times €2.00€2.50    
Examiner €2.00€2.20    
The Daily Telegraph €1.50€2.30    
Daily Star €1.40€1.50    
Daily Record €1.25€1.25    
Daily Mirror €1.10€1.20  €0.10€0.10
Daily Mail €1.00€1.30    
The Sun €1.00€1.00    
The Times €0.90€1.35    
Daily Express €0.80€1.00