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Private Eye hits best sales since 1992

11th February 2010

Satirical magazine sells average of 210,218 copies from July and December, as the Oldie's sales rise 14.6% year on year
Is this as near as Private Eye ever gets to a mea culpa?

Private Eye recorded its best sales figure since 1992 in the second half of last year, according to data published today by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.

The fortnightly satirical magazine sold an average of 210,218 copies in the six-month period between July and December.

A year-on-year increase of 3.4% took the magazine – which celebrates its 50th anniversary next year – over the 210,000 mark for the first time since 1992.

More than 99% of copies are actively purchased – sold at newsstands or through subscription but not given away as bulks or through controlled circulation.

"The Eye's circulation figures are like John Terry's shorts," said editor Ian Hislop. "In the past they may have been down – but now they are firmly up again."

The Oldie, the magazine edited by Private Eye's founder and former editor Richard Ingrams, also did well, adding 14.6% year on year to record a sale 35,965, which was up 4.8% on the previous six-month period to the end of June.

The Week was up a solid 9.8% year on year to 169,690, while monthly magazine Prospect grew its circulation 3% to 28,446.

However, things were less rosy for rightwing political weekly the Spectator, which lost 8.9% of its sales from its record high in the second half of 2008 to hit 70,300.

The Economist's ongoing growth continued, albeit at a modest rate.

The UK edition added 1.2% to reach 189,201, while the continental Europe edition lost 0.2% to 238,704.

MoneyWeek, whose sale is dominated by subscriptions, was up 10.4% year on year to 42,953.

Investors Chronicle, from FT Business, slipped 1.4% to 30,006, although this was a mere 21 copies fewer than in the previous six-month period.

Time magazine's British Isles edition lost 3% year on year to 130,264, while the Europe edition of Newsweek was down 10.2% to 192,239.

Worldwide sales of the New Scientist, excluding Australasia and North America, fell 7.5% year on year to 101,060.

Leftwing weekly current affairs magazine New Statesman did not submit an ABC figure.

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