September Book Sales Drop More Than 12 Percent, AAP Reports
Publishers' book sales tracked by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) for September decreased by 12.1 percent over the previous year to $1.1 billion. Year-to-date sales increased by 3.8 percent.
E-book sales continued to increase significantly, up 158.1 percent over September 2009 ($39.9 million), while year-to-date sales were up 188.4 percent. Sales of downloaded audio books also increased over last year by 73.7 percent, with sales of $7.7 million in September; the category also was up 34.1 percent year-to-date. Physical audio-book sales, however, decreased 42.6 percent in September with sales totaling $11.6 million. Year-to-date sales were down 12.6 percent.
Other categories posting sales increases for September over the previous year included the following:
- University press paperback sales increased 10.6 percent for the month, with sales totaling $6.3 million. Year-to-date sales also were up by 5.5 percent.
- Sales of professional books rose 0.7 percent to $58.8 million and were up by 9.6 percent for the year-to-date.
- Higher-education publishing sales increased 2.2 percent for the month ($416.7 million) and increased 10.6 percent for the year.
More categories, however, experienced declining sales in September over last year. Those categories included the following:
- The children's book category decreased over last September, with hardcover children's/young-adult sales down 17.4 percent for the month ($76.6 million); year-to-date sales were down by 15.1 percent.
- Children's/young-adult paperback sales decreased 1.6 percent in September with sales totaling $53.3 million; sales fell 6.8 percent for the year-to-date.
- The adult hardcover category was down 40.4 percent in September with sales of $180.3 million, and sales for the year-to-date were down by 8.1 percent.
- Adult paperback sales decreased 15.8 percent for the month ($111.5 million) but increased by 1.5 percent for the year so far.
- Adult mass-market sales decreased 23.6 percent for September with sales totaling $67.8 million; sales were down by 15.7 percent year-to-date.
- Religious book sales were down 2.5 percent for the month with sales totaling $66.1 million; sales were down by 0.3 percent for the year-to-date.
- Sales of university press hardcover books decreased 4.8 percent in September to $5.1 million; sales increased by 4.1 percent year-to-date.
- The K-12 elementary/high school category posted total net sales of $351.5 million, down 10 percent over the prior year. Year-to-date sales of $3.2 billion, a 5.7 percent increase over 2009.