SYDNEY: Australia's newspaper industry, already reeling from a series of editorial cutbacks at leading titles, has been hit by another blow, as year-on-year print advertising revenues plummeted in April.

According to early data from Standard Media Index (SMI), adspend with newspapers was down 26.3% last month compared with the same period a year earlier, Mumbrella reported.

That comes in the wake of similarly grim figures for March, when spending was down 25%.

It added that these figures would have been known by executives at Fairfax Media when they announced redundancies earlier this month. Last month News Corp Australia said it was making most of its photographers redundant and laying off many sub-editors as well.

Those decisions, however, followed similar figures for March, when newspapers registered a 25% decline.

SMI's preliminary figures were derived from spending by media agencies and do not take account of direct sales or late bookings; once the latter are factored in the decline may be slightly less, at around 22%.

Print ad revenues in the magazine sector are following the same trend, with April's preliminary figures down 21.2%.

Both television (-6.6%) and digital (-9.0%) also saw falls, while outdoor (+5.5%) and radio (+5.5%) saw equal gains. Cinema was the outstanding performer, helped by a late Easter, with revenues up a third (+32.9%).

The value of all media agency spending measured by SMI was down 6.8% for the month and 0.6% for the year.

Data sourced from Mumbrella; additional content by WARC staff