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Threat of Substitution Well Entrenched in U.S. Newspapers

April 16, 2013




Today’s chart illustrates the rise and fall of newspaper revenues in the United States since 1956. All numbers are expressed in constant 2013 U.S. dollars.

The U.S. newspaper industry pulled in $33 billion in circulation and ad revenues last year. What sounds like a lot of money is still a low point in the long history of newspapers in the United States. Adjusted for inflation, 2012 newspaper revenues were 15 percent lower than they were in 1956. 

Since hitting a peak in 2000, when newspapers raked in almost $80 billion, the industry has all but collapsed. The internet boom caused print advertising revenue to decline more than 70 percent since 2000, while circulation revenue dropped by a quarter. Advertising on newspaper websites now accounts for more than 10 percent of the industry’s revenue. However, given the fact that print ad revenue dropped by more than $45 billion since 2000, the $3.4 billion in online ad sales seem like a mere drop in the bucket.



From → business, Strategy

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