National Post kills Monday publication

The National Post won’t publish on Mondays this summer, making it the first paper in Canada to drop daily circulation as a survival strategy.

Publisher Gordon Fisher announced the change on the same day his paper’s Financial Post wrapped up a five-part series on the future of the newspaper industry. The series, by several Canwest reporters, was bullish about the future of an industry that is suffering historic losses. In the U.S., newspaper companies have shed thousands of staff, shut down titles and filed for bankruptcy.

The Detroit Free Press and Detroit News now offer home delivery only three days a week. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer and the Christian Science Monitor both stopped printing and moved to an online-only version. The Rocky Mountain News shut down this winter, and owners of both the Boston Globe and the San Francisco Examiner have threatened to close those titles if the bottom line doesn’t improve.

The situation is less severe in Canada, but every major media group here has had layoffs and losses. Canwest, which owns the National Post and major newspapers across the country, is struggling to avoid bankruptcy. Shares of the company traded for just 26 cents on May 1.

The Post will stop printing Mondays for nine weeks, beginning on June 29. The plan is to resume printing after Labour Day in September. In a note to readers distributed on April 30, Fisher promised that his readers will continue to be well served by his paper’s online edition on Monday. His letter to readers is not available online.