After hearing Newsweek lost 51 percent of its print circulation in the space of just five years London-based digital media blogger Martin Belam looked at UK newspaper performance.

He found the British market declined 27 percent over the same period.

Newsweek is set to publish its last print edition in December 2012.

How did New Zealand newspapers compare?

I went to the Audio Bureau of Circulation and found comparable numbers for the three large daily metro papers and the two main Sunday papers.

Circulation tussle

It’s not a direct comparison, The Herald on Sunday was just getting started in 2007 and that had a big impact on its direct rival The Sunday Star-Times as the pair tussled for readers.

During the five-year period the five big New Zealand papers collectively shed 16 percent of their readers.

The biggest loser was the Sunday Star Times down 28 percent, while the Herald on Sunday increased its circulation by 11 percent. The Dominion-Post is down 19 percent while the New Zealand Herald and the Christchurch Press are down just 15 percent

Among these titles Fairfax newspapers lost ground to APN titles.

So, for now at least, New Zealand’s newspapers are holding up relatively well.

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