【Aging, safety net and fiscal crisis in Japan】No. 208 Despite an increase in households, newspaper circulation has declined.

In this column series, Yukihiro Matsuyama, Research Director at CIGS introduces the latest information about aging, safety net and fiscal crisis in Japan with data of international comparison.

The total population in Japan has started to decline after peaking at 128,084,000 in 2008. The total Japanese population, excluding foreigners, has also declined since peaking at 126,382,000 in 2010. However, as shown in Figure 1, the number of Japanese households increased despite the population decline. The reason is that the number of single-person households for those aged 65 and older is increasing.

Since households are increasing, it seems that newspaper circulation can be increased. However, as shown in Figure 2, it has significantly decreased. The biggest contributing factor is thought to be the spread of the Internet.

Figure 1 Number of Japanese households


(Source) Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, National Life Basic Survey

Figure 2 Number of newspapers in circulation


(Source) The Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association

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