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L.A. Times Circulation Up in 2 Areas; Overall Figure Drops

The Los Angeles Times continued to post circulation gains in the key competitive markets of Orange County, the San Fernando Valley and Ventura County, while the newspaper’s total circulation declined slightly as expected, newly released figures show.

According to figures filed with the Audit Bureau of Circulations for the six months ended March 31, Times daily circulation in Orange County grew by 5,849 copies, or 3%, to 203,975, compared to the same period a year ago. Sunday circulation grew by 6,068 copies, or 2.1%, to 297,391.

Daily circulation for the combined San Fernando Valley/Ventura County Edition increased by 100 copies, or 0.4%, to 233,415, compared to the same period a year ago. Sunday circulation grew by 3,536 copies, or 1.1%, to 339,722, according to Times records.

Total daily circulation for The Times, the largest newspaper in the West and the nation’s second-largest metropolitan daily, declined by 33,702, or 3%, to 1,104,651. Sunday circulation declined by 19,077, or 1.3%, to 1,502,120. The declines are largely the result of planned strategic cutbacks in unprofitable circulation outside the newspaper’s core market and of soft street sales that have affected newspapers across the country.

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“The Times’ competitive position in its key markets has never been stronger,” said Richard T. Schlosberg III, Times publisher and chief executive. “These latest numbers underscore the value of our paper to readers as well as the success of our strategy to concentrate resources in our core market.”

Times circulation gains outpaced the Orange County Register’s performance during the reporting period. In Orange County, the Register posted weekday circulation gains of 1,030 copies, or 0.3%, to 323,829, compared to the same six-month period a year ago. Its Sunday circulation grew by 1,395, or 0.4%, to 374,720.

Daily circulation for the Los Angeles Daily News in its primary market area declined 3,079 copies, or 1.7%, to 183,058, compared to the comparable period a year ago. Sunday circulation fell 7,870 copies, or 3.7%, to 202,294.

The Times has posted significant circulation gains in its key regional markets since 1989 as a result of more aggressive marketing, expanded local and regional coverage and the newspaper’s cable-system-specific TV Times magazine that is included in the Sunday paper across Southern California.

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Since 1989, Times circulation in Orange County has increased 22.4% weekdays and 42.6% on Sunday; circulation in the combined San Fernando Valley/Ventura County area has grown 12.4% daily and 23.2% on Sunday.


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