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The Globe and Mail has the largest audience of any publication in Canada, with 6.5 million weekly readers in print and digital, according to new data from the industry's audience-measurement body.

The Globe also has the largest weekly digital readership, reaching an audience of 4.3 million people online. When the monthly print and digital readership of Report on Business magazine is included, the company's total audience rises to 6.9 million.

Third-quarter research from Vividata – which surveys 41,446 people aged 12 and up, to measure readership of 135 newspapers and magazines in both print and digital formats – suggests that 79 per cent of Canadians read a newspaper every week, and 72 per cent read magazines.

How people are reading those publications, however, differs significantly by age. Not only are younger readers more likely to consume content digitally, but they prefer different devices.

The Globe's cumulative weekly print readership was the largest in the country, at 3.784 million between October, 2015, and September, 2016, just ahead of the Toronto Star's 3.782 million print readers and 2.55 million readers of the National Post.

Report on Business magazine had the highest readership among business magazines, with 1.66 million readers in print and digital formats. After Rogers Media closed Canadian Business magazine last year, ROB magazine is now the only national business magazine that is published in print at least 10 times a year.

Reader's Digest had the highest magazine readership, with a combined print and digital audience of 4.8 million people. Other notable titles included Cineplex magazine with 4.7 million readers; Live Better with 4.5 million readers; Canadian Living with 4.1 million and Canadian Geographic with four million. The leading French-language magazines were RicardoMagazine with 1.9 million readers, and Coup de Pouce, which reaches an audience of 1.5 million.

Publications across the country have struggled with falling print advertising revenues. Print readership is declining slightly: cumulative weekly readership was 12.03 million for all print papers in the 12 months ending September, 2016, down from 12.26 million measured in the previous quarter.

Because Vividata has changed its survey methodology, digital readership cannot be compared with previous studies. The research consortium founded in 2015 merges two previous firms that handled audience measurement for publications in Canada: the Print Measurement Bureau and NADbank. It publishes rolling 12-month results, four times a year.

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