In New FAS-FAX: Circ Clues Emerge in Detroit After Big Shift

By: Jennifer Saba The Detroit Media Partnership took a huge gamble when it cut home delivery of the Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News to three days at the end of last March. Today's Audit Bureau of Circulations report lends a few clues as to how the papers are holding up after trimming back home-delivered copies on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday.

The most straightforward year-over-year comparison is Sunday circulation, which fell 7.4% to 560,188. The national average for Sunday circ for the 562 newspapers filing to ABC was a decline of 7.4%.

In a conversation with Susie Ellwood, CEO of the Detroit Media Partnership, she explained that the Monday-Friday year-over-year comparison included the home-delivered copies for the six months ending September 2008. The September 2009 period included the electronic editions. The combined daily average -- for both the Free Press and the News -- fell 8.1% to 437,578.

?Because of the model change, obviously it makes sense to look at the Thursday-Friday average,? Ellwood told E&P. The combined average circ for Thursday and Friday rose just under 1%, she added.

Single-copy sales were off though Monday-Friday. On a combined basis, single-copy dropped 8.7% to 437,578 copies.


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