wsj.pngEditor & Publisher has published Nielsen Online’s monthly unique visitor tally for newspaper websites in April and they have a few surprises. First, there was a huge jump for The Wall Street Journal (ranked number two on the list) while hits at The New York Times‘ Web site were down by 8 percent compared to last year.

Despite the dip in visitors last month, the Times‘ site remains number one among online newspapers. Still, a Times spokeswoman told E&P that the paper is looking into Nielsen’s numbers because they “believe their data is in error.”

However, over at the Journal, Deputy Managing Editor Alan Murray proudly proclaimed’s record traffic — 12.4 million unique visitors last month, up 160 percent from last year — in an internal memo sent to staff on Friday.

“No other major news site is growing at anything remotely close to that pace,” the memo said.

Nielsen’s top 30 U.S. newspaper Web sites and their April 2009 unique visitor numbers after the jump

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