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Kiplinger’s unveils green issue

Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine is putting its first-ever “green issue” on newsstands September 18.

The October issue will also be the monthly’s first single-topic edition. All articles in the green issue will focus on how caring for the environment can benefit readers financially.

Kiplinger’s editor Fred W. Frailey described the decision to do a green issue as “serendipity.” The idea was presented by a senior editor at a monthly staff meeting.

“I said, what can we do, as a personal finance magazine, to contribute to this idea? Get off politics and start talking about money,” Frailey said. “For instance, it was apparent to me that the whole subject of global warming – it’s so depressing – but the fact is, there are going to be winners and losers out of this, and wouldn’t you like to be a winner?”

One story in the green issue looks at stocks – such as fuel-efficient trains, cleaner coal and certain tech companies – that could benefit from global warming. Another looks at ways to save energy, and therefore money, around the house. Other articles ask which cars are greenest, and explore the economics of solar panels.

Most readers of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance are baby-boomers, with a median age in the mid-50s. The majority of its circulation is subscription, not newsstand-based.

“I have no idea how it’s going to be received,” admitted Frailey. “I think that the way we presented this will not upset [readers]. I think they’re concerned about the climate and their children’s and grandchildren’s futures, and this is information that helps them right now.”

Frailey added that if newsstand sales were over 50,000 for this issue, he would consider reviving the green issue next year.

Kiplinger’s has a rate base circulation of 800,000. Spring 2007 MRI reports a readership of 2.3 million – a 3% increase over last spring. However, ad pages fell 8.2% the first half of this year, to 261.88. A four-color full-page ad in Kiplinger’s costs $65,990.

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