U.S. Newspaper Industry - Statistics & Facts

As of 2015, there were five billion newspaper readers in the world. Nearly three billion of them read printed newspapers. Newspapers only accounted for four percent of media’s total revenue generated through digital sales that year. Although print still predominant, figures show that the global newspaper industry is shifting towards digital platforms. The digital newspaper industry revenue is forecast to grow by 9.8 percent annually from 2015 to 2020; whereas non-digital is forecast to experience a decline of annual three percent during the same measured period.


Overall, the newspaper industry has seen better days in the U.S. Consumption of newspapers is expected to decline considerably. In 2015, Americans spent, on average, about 17 minutes reading newspapers on a daily basis. By 2018, American consumers will only dedicate 12 daily minutes to the medium. In terms of digital platforms, digital consumption in the U.S. newspaper market falls in line with global consumption. Print is still dominant, as over half of Americans only read print newspapers. However, a growing proportion of consumers couple their traditional consumption of print media with newer forms such as web and mobile. This change in consumption is reflected in employment and revenue. Employment in this sector is undergoing critical cuts, with figures down from 256,800 employees in 2010 to 183,200 in 2016. Revenue of the newspaper industry in the U.S. is forecast to drop from around 30.5 billion U.S. dollars in 2016 to 27 billion U.S. dollars by 2020.

Newspaper publishers’ key source of revenue advertising is also projected to shrink in the next years. The top 5 newspaper advertisers in the U.S. are Macy’s, News Corp., Bankrate, Sprint and Target. Macy’s spent 302.9 million U.S. dollars on newspaper advertising in 2015.

The Wall Street Journal is the leading newspaper in the U.S. in regards to paid print circulation. The New York Times, the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and USA Today complete the top 5 of biggest daily newspapers in the country. The New York Times has the biggest presence on Facebook, with over 25 million interactions on its page in 2017.

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