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Readership continues to decline for Finland’s print papers

Print readership is tumbling in Finland, according to MediaAuditFinland, which collates data on print and digital media in the country.

Sanomalehtiä.
Image: Ismo Pekkarinen / AOP

Digital subscriptions have not been able to replace dwindling print readership for most newspapers, according to the latest figures from MediaAuditFinland, which tracks the circulation of Finnish print and digital newspapers.

Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet (HBL) lost more readers than any other newspaper last year in Finland. Between 2017 and 2018, Hufvudstadsbladet lost some 14,000 readers, bringing circulation down to 51,000 from 65,000. Meanwhile HBL's digital subscriptions also fell from 71,000 to 57,000.

Circulation for the country's main daily, Helsingin Sanomat, fell from 569,000 to 562,000.

Niche papers enjoy upsurge

Meanwhile, papers focusing on local or specific sectors experienced an uptick.

Agricultural sector newspaper Maaseudun Tulevaisuus saw print readership rise from 306,000 to 322,000 while Österbottens Tidning, a regional Ostrobothnian paper, gained 3,000 readers.

The business daily Kauppalehti saw its print readership drop by nearly 12 percent, but its digital readership was more than twice as high, rising by four percent to give the paper overall growth.

Turun Sanomat, a traditional broadsheet from the southwestern city of Turku, also saw good growth in digital readership offsetting losses on the print side. So did regional dailies such as Kouvolan Sanomat, Länsi-Savo and Etelä-Saimaa, which all saw digital growth of well over 25 percent. Itä-Savo and Salon Seudun Sanomat did even better, with digital growth of more than 35 percent.

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