There are a total of 76 national daily titles in France, representing a circulation of 779 million copies per year.
The “big three” of the so-called quality daily newspapers are Le Monde, Le Figaro and LibÃ©ration. Despite a continuous drop in circulation they still have an important influence on both public opinion and the other media. However, their combined circulation of approximately 850,000 is lower than that of the major newspapers in the other European countries.
Another big name in the popular press is Le Parisien, a conservative daily, which has managed to renovate its style and spring back after a period of declining circulation; it also offers a national edition, Aujourd’hui. These innovations have been successful and Le Parisien, with a circulation of 400,000, has climbed to second place among national dailies; sales rose by 9% from 1991 to 1993.
In contrast, the popular news daily France-Soir has not been able to check its downswing; circulation fell from 1.5 million in 1955 to 500,000 in 1985 and 200,000 in 1994.
Specialized dailies have done better, especially the daily economic and financial papers (Les Echos, with a circulation of 138,000 and La Tribune DesfossÃ©s with 78,000) and the daily sports press; L’Equipe, founded in 1946, has a circulation of 381,000 on weekdays and over 400,000 on Monday.0