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Roy Morgan Newspaper Print Readership Results for March 2016

Print Readership results for Australian Newspapers for the 12 months to March 2016

Roy Morgan Research today releases the latest Print Readership results for Australian Newspapers for the 12 months to March 2016. Total masthead readership will follow next week, incorporating enhanced cross-device audience data.

Monday to Friday

The number of Australians (14+) who read the print edition one or more metro daily newspapers Monday to Friday fell 10% compared with year to March 2015 to 5,984,000. Some regional titles performed strongly, including the Geelong Advertiser (up 15.2% to 53,000 readers per average weekday issue) and Gold Coast Bulletin (up 5.8% to 73,000). After some declines in 2015, readership of the Newcastle Herald has now steadied at 86,000.

Among the major metro dailies, print readership of both NSW-based titles was robust: the Daily Telegraph was almost unchanged with 645,000 readers  per average weekday issues, and the Sydney Morning Herald fell just 1.5% to 513,000.

News Corp also outperformed Fairfax in Victoria, where the Herald Sun with 843,000 print readers (down just 3.0% year-on-year) remains the country’s most-read weekday print newspaper. Readership of The Age declined (down 16.8% to 469,000), however this largely reflects the title ‘catching up’ on the wider industry declines it had successfully staved off in 2014-15. 

The major metro dailies in other states had smaller declines: the Adelaide Advertiser (down 3.0% to 324,000), Courier-Mail (down 6.2% to 409,000), and the West Australian (down 9.0% to 402,000). Nationally, The Australian fell 7.2% to 310,000 but the Financial Review is on relatively steady footing (down 2.5% to 192,000).


Saturday newspapers are now read in their print form by 5,006,000 Australians (down 4.6%). Replicating their strong weekday results were the Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin (up 17.8% to 86,000) and the Geelong Advertiser (up 14.7% to 78,000). Readership also grew for the weekend edition of the Financial Review (up 8.2% to 145,000), while the Weekend Australian held steady (down 0.9% to 658,000).

As with Monday to Friday, both metro NSW titles are doing better than their Victorian stablemates on Saturday: the Daily Telegraph (down 2.1% to 597,000) and the Sydney Morning Herald (down 2.7% to 711,000), compared with the Herald Sun (down 10.2% to 766,000) and the Saturday Age (down 8.4% to 612,000). 


Australia’s Sunday newspapers reach, in print, a combined 4,546,000 readers (down 6.6%). The most read Sunday paper is also the country’s most-read newspaper overall: the Sunday Telegraph continues to reach over a million readers (1,015,000, down 0.8%).  

Sunday titles that performed better than average include the Sun-Herald (down 4.8% to 640,000), Sunday Mail (SA) (down 4.9% to 425,000), Sunday Mail (QLD) (down 5.3% to 785,000), and Sunday Herald Sun (down 5.7% to 847,000), while the Sunday Times and Sunday Age suffered double-digit declines.

View the full Newspaper Average Print Issue Readership Results

Newspaper Inserted Magazines

From feature articles and quizzes to stock picks and ties, healthy recipes, and TV listings, newspaper inserted magazines reach 4,961,000 Australians a week (down 4.2%). Major successes over the past year include the Financial Review’s smart inclusion of Smart Investor (up 43.6% to 112,000) and the ongoing strength of Boss (up 1.0% to 104,000), and The Australian’s come-true Wish (up 25.4% to 89,000).

Good Weekend remains far and away the country’s top newspaper inserted with 1,207,000 readers across NSW and Victoria (down 9.5%). 

View the full Newspaper Inserted Magazine Readership Results

Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“Almost 8.5 million Australians read at least one print edition of a weekday or weekend newspaper during the week. Overall, Saturday editions have performed best, reaching over five million readers between them. 

“News Corp and Fairfax’s Sydney-based titles are doing well, with readership steady for both the Daily Telegraph and Sydney Morning Herald. However it’s notable that their Melbourne stablemates have each declined, suggesting there are regional differences in print newspaper appetites, rather than shifts between the two publishers.

“Among regional titles, the Geelong Advertiser and Gold Coast Bulletin have expanded their reach across weekday and weekend issues, while the Canberra Times and Illawarra Mercury have contracted.

“Total masthead readership will follow next week, incorporating enhanced cross-device audience data.”

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About Roy Morgan

Roy Morgan is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices throughout Australia, as well as in Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate


25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%