LONDON: The Evening Standard, long-time monopolist of the capital's newspaper market, is experiencing the hot breath of competition for the first time in twenty years - a novel experience that in September slashed its circulation by 7.64%.

Not since 1987 has the Standard - owned by Associated Newspapers - been challenged. At that time the now disgraced publishing tycoon Robert Maxwell threw down the gauntlet with a 24-hour paper, The London Daily News, only to retire with his tail between his legs five months later.

Rupert Murdoch, however, is a far savvier opponent than was the blustering Maxwell. Moreover, his pockets have an even deeper lining and his free newcomer thelondonpaper, which made its debut on 4 September, has notched an audited circulation of 327,120.

The Standard is also being harried in the London market by independent niche London free morning business daily City AM, whose first recorded ABC numbers exceed 90,000.

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff