New York Times Readership Statistics - Featured Image
By Milos Djordjevic | May 1, 2020 | 0 Comments

32 Mind-Blowing New York Times Readership Statistics [The 2020 Edition]

The New York Times has always been one of the most appreciated and respected newspapers in the world. Many readers praise its high editorial standards and impactful journalism. One of its enduring core values is reporting objectively, thoroughly, and responsibly. Reputation aside, we’ll explore what the latest New York Times readership statistics have to say about the paper.

The Times has always kept away from yellow headlines and click-bait. It appeals to a knowledgeable, well-educated audience, interested in top-notch news content. 

Some criticize the Times for openly affiliating with the Democratic party. Others find the tone of their articles pretentious and pompous or believe that the paper is elitist because it mainly targets a high-income, well-educated demographic.
Claims of The New York Times losing subscribers are only true domestically, as the paper is in fact increasing its total readership around the world. 

Let’s dive in. 

Amazing New York Times Readership Stats (Editor’s Choice)

  • The NY Times managed to enhance its popularity and prestige by thoroughly covering the sinking of the Titanic in April 1912. 
  • In 1971, the paper sparked controversy when it unveiled the “Pentagon Papers” state secrets in a series of reports. Its articles shed light on the US role in the Vietnam War.  This publication brought the Pulitzer Prize to the NY Times in 1972. 
  • In 1994, the company bought a 40% interest in the Popcorn Channel, making a move towards the cable channel industry. 
  • In 2011, The NY Times faced losses in print advertising, so it added a paywall to its website. This bold move resulted in about $100 million in annual revenue in 2012. 
  • The paper’s Chinese website was closed and blocked soon after its launch in 2012. 
  • The New York Times Company suffered a $14 million net loss in 2016 due to decreasing revenue in print advertising.
  • In 2016, The NY Times revealed that they had to close prepress print and editing production in Paris. This move cost a lot of workers in their jobs. On another note, the company used the many as an investment in digital media growth.
  • NYT’s stock price grew by 175%, from $12.84 per share in August 2016 to $35.27 per share in August 2019, which is the opposite of the negative prognostics for The New York Times readership statistics. 

NYT Revenue Stats

1. The New York Times revenues in 2015 were $1.579 million. In 2018 they increased to $1.749 million. 

(Trefis)

This growing trend brought  $170 million to The NY Times revenue base. 

These stats are a testament to the newspaper’s healthy growth in revenue. Researchers predicted strong margins and increased revenue for 2019, as well. They said that the company is doing an amazing job by taking cost-reduction measures. 

2. The total revenue of the NY Times company was expected to increase by 4,1% to 1,820 million in 2019. 

(Trefis)

Researches said that they expected The NY Times to make this huge profit from its digital products, higher subscriptions, rental revenue, and higher commercial printing. Statistics forecast that this will mark an additional $241 million to the total revenue between 2015 and 2019. 

3. NYT’s price to sales multiple has grown from 1,33x to 3,39x from August 2016 to August 2019. 

(Trefis)

If we compare these results to NYT’s global peers, we can conclude that NYT’s price to sales multiple was four times higher over the last four years. In contrast, Tribune Media and News Corp faced a low multiple during these four years. 

This growth resulted from the company’s increased profitability and expansion of the revenue base. 

4. NYT expected to make $1.82 billion in 2019 from subscriptions, advertising, and other practices.  

(Trefis)

The New York Times’s empire is divided into three major sections. 

  • Subscription – consists of profits from subscriptions to digital and print products. 
  • Advertising – sales, adds, and commercials on print and digital media platforms. 
  • Other – retail commerce, profits from licensing, affiliate referrals, and so on. 

Researchers also expect NYT’s profits to grow to $1.9 billion in 2020.

5. In 2008, more than 60% of NYT’s revenue came from advertising. In 2016, this number stood at 30%. 

(Statista)

Many newspapers get their fair share of profits from advertising. Some of them cannot keep running without this additional and significant source of income. Newspaper companies must always think one step ahead and diversify their sources of profit because newspaper advertising expenses have declined.

NYT Subscription Stats

6. From 2014 to 2019, NYT’s digital news products enjoyed intermittent growth. So, the number of subscribers went from 799,000 in Q1 2014 to 3,43 million in Q4 2019. 

(Statista)

These New York Times’ digital subscriber numbers also corroborate that NYT’s subscribers of digital products reached one million in 2015. It is possible that the implementation of the paywall on the website contributed to this success. 

7. NYT marked the second-highest newspaper circulation worldwide as of Q1 of 2016. 

(Statista)

The New York Times Company is an industry leader not only in digital platforms but also with regards to traditional newspaper circulation.

8. The way The New York Times carries out digital subscriptions is changing the publishing industry. By 2021, US publishers will make $2.1 billion in profit from the sales of digital replica editions, the so-called e-papers.

(Statista)

Like many other newspapers, NYT has struggled with decreased circulation over the last couple of years. So, it decided to solve that problem by introducing digital formats and paid content to cut costs. This step should result in The New York Times subscription increase. 

9. NYT has 4,7 million subscriptions in digital and print form. 

(New York Times) 

Roughly 3.8 million are paying for the NYT’s digital products. Besides, there are 197,000 people who pay for the publisher’s news, cooking applications, and crosswords.

10. During the last three months of 2018, there were over 265,000 new digital subscriptions. 

(MarketWatch) 

Researchers point out that this is the biggest progress for The New York Times subscriber numbers since the beginning of the Trump presidency. The president has a tumultuous relationship with NYT because of the paper’s deep scoops on his administration.  

11. The New York Times suffered acquisitions and layoffs, but as of February 2019, its newsroom team expanded to 1,600 people, the highest number of newsroom employees in NYT’s 167-year history.

(MarketWatch) 

These stats about NYT’s digital growth prove that success comes at the expense of others. In trying times, businesses need to work up a strategy to keep their lights on and engines running. That being said, the NYT’s subscription rate increase resulted in closing some offices but also in hiring more people to work in the newsroom. 

12. In Q4 2019, subscription profits decreased to 2,2%. So, the print editions weighed down to $263.6 million.

(MarketWatch) 

These fluctuations seem drastic, but the company expected an increase in revenue in Q1 2020.  

13. NYT intends to increase its number of subscriptions to 10 million by 2025.  

(MarketWatch) 

The New York Times has big plans for growing its subscription rates. By the end of 2019, it had 4.7 million subscribers.  Digital ones were the predominant part of this number.

New York Times Readership Statistics - Newspapers

New York Times Readership Statistics and Audience Demographics

14. In 2018, 20.21% of US interviewees aged 18 to 29 said they had read NYT in the past two weeks.  

(Statista)

These stats prove that the NYT’s content appeals to America’s youth. The company hopes that this percentage will go up in the years to come. 

15. In 2012, Pew Research Center discovered that 40% of respondents reported that they prefer reading NPR, The Economist, and The New York Times. 

(International Business Times)

Interestingly, close to two-thirds of the questioned Americans, 64%, said that they enjoy reading newspapers without specific political orientation. In contrast, 26% claimed they want their news sources to coincide with their political opinions. On another note, 40% belonged to the upper-class that earns more than $75,000/year. 

16. 56% of NYT readers are university graduates. 

(Pew Research Center)

Statistics show that close to two-thirds of college graduates make the readers of reputable magazines, such as The New Yorker. These numbers also prove that NYT successfully targets intellectual audiences. 

17. 38% of The New York Times’ readers are families that earn at least $75,000 per year. 

(Pew Research Center)

Statistics prove that the family income of Americans is closely tied to newspaper reading preferences. The wealthier people are, the more likely they are to pick up their copy of The New York Times on their way to work in the morning. 

The same goes for other reputable magazines, such as The New Yorker and The Economist. 46% of The Economist’s readers are well-to-do, as are 41% of The New Yorker’s readers. So, how many people read The New York Times is closely tied to their income. 

18. 52% of NYT’s online readers are male and 48% are female. 

(Hitwise) 

Stats corroborate that men read NYT online more than women. But, this gender percentage gap is quite small, only 4%. 

19. 49% of the male NYT readers are 35-44 years old, but not a lot of female readers belong to this age group. 

(Hitwise)

Further research proves that female readers of NYT are older, 55-64, in comparison to the male ones. Baby Boomer ladies prefer the content that NYT has to offer more than younger ones. 

On the other side, older male Millennials and younger Generation X men enjoy reading about finance, business, and tech news, while Baby Boomer women prefer health, arts, and human interest stories in their newspaper, New York Times online readership statistics prove. 

20. 56% of NYT readers are married. 

(Hitwise)

Research also shows that most over-indexed readers (i.e., those most likely to visit the website) were never married.

21. NYT readers are 201% more likely than the average person to visit the Gay & Lesbian category of its webpage. 

(Hitwise)

This information does not come as a surprise since many NYT readers are progressive-oriented. Anyway, the Gay&Lesbian category is by far the most popular one. This column has a visiting rate higher than other website categories, such as Fashion, Beauty, Politics. 

22. When it comes to The New York Times readership demographics, the paper’s readers are 40% more likely to be interested in overseas news. 

(Hitwise)

Also, 24% of them are likely to be curious about other cultures and their lifestyles. But only a small portion of them (one-third) would participate in a civil protest for issues they advocate. 

23. NYT’s readers are 226% more likely to search for “Trump” than the average person. 

(Hitwise)

The current American president is the star of the NYT’s Politics section. Also, NYT readers are 116% more likely to search for Trump-related news. The NYT is taking advantage of its readers’ interest in its Trump coverage. Even though the president publicly slams the NYT, its subscription rates are hitting the roof. 

24. 10% of NYT readers are Ultra Conservative, New York Times readership statistics confirm. 

(Hitwise)

It is no surprise that members of the Democratic party show affection and interest in the NYT’s content. But the fact one in ten readers is Ultra Conservative is a bit bewildering. That being said, NY Times readers are known to also read a mishmash of right-oriented newspapers, center-balanced websites, or left-leaning news sources. Perhaps this is a sign of the readers’ critical thinking and interest in seeing political problems discussed from different perspectives. 

25. 36% of NY Times readers have problems with their weight. 

(Hitwise)

This is one of the most surprising facts about New York Times readership demographics. On another note, 71% of them work out regularly,  27% count calories more than the average person, and 13% are less likely to try new healthy food. 

26. In 2018, 15% of NYT subscribers (not counting those paying for Cooking and Crosswords), lived outside of the US. 

(NiemanLab) 

If we take The New York Times readership demographics by country into account, we’ll see that stats predict higher readership rates outside the US. 

27. Canadians hold 27% of NYT’s subscription base on an international level. 

(NiemanLab)  

In 2018, Canada had around 94,000 subscribers to NYT. Canadian readers bought and read the NY Times avidly long before the company invested heavily in building up a strong subscriber base in their country.  So, if you have ever wondered who reads The New York Times outside the US, you should know that Canadians adore its content. 

28. In 2018, the NYT’s sales doubled in Australia. 

(NiemanLab) 

Although things are going pretty well for the Australian audience, the NYT is trying to discover the proper measure of content that will be not only about Australian stories, but also include other types of coverage. 

29. 14% of the Americans claimed that they consider The NY Times a trustworthy source of information. 

(Statista)

This statistic refers to the level of trust of Americans in the credibility of the NY Times as of April 2018. 

30. 80% of Democrats considered it okay for The New York Times to make Donald Trump’s tax returns data public in 2019. 

(Statista)

Nevertheless, the reports on Trump’s tax returns sparked a lot of controversies, and the president showed disdain towards the paper’s initiative. The Republican party showed less support for the publication of this sensitive data, 23%.

New York Times Circulation Figures

31. On average, 487,000 copies of The NY Times circulated every workday in 2018. 

(Statista)

This stat shows a decrease from roughly 1.03 million copies a decade earlier. The NYT stopped publishing the numbers on weekday circulation for all others but the print circulation. 

 

32. In 2018, the average paid circulation of the Sunday edition of The NY Times was 992,000 copies. 

(Statista)

This research was conducted from 2000 to 2018, and it shows data on the circulation of the paper’s Sunday edition in the US. This figure proves that many Americans are fond of this unique copy of The NY Times and its rich, useful, resourceful content. 

New York Times Readership Statistics - NYT Building

FAQ

Q: What Is the Readership of the New York Times?

The number of people reading The New York Times is enormous, and it’s growing by the day. Even though this reputable newspaper experienced a drop in sales of paper editions, it quickly recovered. The New York Times readership numbers peaked as of December 2017, reaching 3.5 million paid print and digital subscriptions combined. 

An estimated 130 million people read The NY Times monthly. This number is excellent news because this is twice as much as over the previous two years.

The newspaper’s content is often praised for its high quality,  objectivity, resourcefulness, and thoroughness. 

Q: What Is the Circulation of the Sunday New York Times?

New York Times Sunday circulation in 2018 was 992,000 copies.

The Sunday edition comes with extra add-ons. It contains the compelling The New York Times Book Review, Sunday Review, The New York Times Style Magazine, and The New York Times Magazine.

Besides, the Sunday NY Times is affordable to those with deeper pockets. But, many readers say that its content is worth it. Today, you can buy it on NYC newsstands for $5 and $6 in the rest of the country. 

Q: How Many Copies of The New York Times Are Sold Daily?

New York Times daily circulation as of January 2020 shows a substantial drop, from roughly 1.03 million in the previous decade. The number of weekday copies continued to dip in the last couple of years. 

Q: How Many Subscribers Does the New York Times Have?

As of August 2019, the paper had around 4.7 million subscribers. 

In 2020, this growing trend continues. The New York Times has achieved a major milestone by earning $800 million in annual digital revenue and reaching a total of 5.251 million subscriptions. The number includes readers who buy the ink editions and the digital audience. The latter number 3.5 million.  

New  York Times subscription numbers are consistently growing. The number of digital-only subscribers grew from 799,000 in Q1 2014 to 3.43 million in the Q4 2019. 

Final Thoughts

All things considered, the future is bright for The New York Times. With its innovative spirit, unparalleled content, and impeccable resourcefulness, the NYT will continue to grow its digital and print base of readers successfully, New York Times readership statistics confirm. 

And now it’s over to you:

What’s your take on The New York Times? Do you love it or hate it? Let us know in the comments below!

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