October Publishing Sales Down In Seven Categories, AAP Reports

December 15, 2004
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December 15-31, 2004 Edition

October Publishing

Sales Down In Seven

Categories, AAP Reports

NEW YORK, NY/12/14/04—Publishing sales were down in seven categories tracked by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) in October; however, gains in six categories countered the losses leading to only a slight loss in year-to-date sales that could be easily made up for in the way of strong holiday sales.

Sales of adult hardcover books faltered slightly, dipping 17.1 percent in October, with sales of $171.6 million (up 4.4 percent for the year). Adult paperback gained 2.2 percent ($87.9 million), with the year to date figure up 0.6 percent. The adult mass market category gained 24.5 percent for October, with sales of $66.6 million for this category (down 4.5 percent in 2004).

The children’s and young adult hardcover category posted an 11.1 percent gain (66.6 million); this category is down 27.1 percent for the year. The children’s and young adult paperback publishing sales saw a less significant loss for October of 0.3 percent with sales totaling $33.6 million. This category has grown over the year, and is now up 2.8 percent for 2004.

Audio book sales, witnessed a 16.2 percent gain in October ($16.7 million), and sales are down only 1.0 percent for the year. E-books sales were up 8.0 percent ($700,000) in October, this rapidly expanding category is up 55.2 percent for the year. Religious books lost ground in their steady growth in October; sales were down 28.2 percent (totaling $33.2 million). The religious book category maintains a 14.1 percent year to date growth figure.

Sales for university press hardcover books witnessed a troubling 50.3 percent loss in October (sales totaled $10.1 million). That category has declined since summer and is currently down 5.4 percent in 2004. Sales in the university press paperback category lost 60.7 percent in October (sales totaled $17.8 million); this category is down 9.4 percent for the year. Sales in the professional and scholarly category lost 6.3 percent in October, with sales of $61.0 million; sales in that category are up 2.7 percent for the year. Sales of ‘other’ types of books posted a gain of 23.8 percent in October with sales of $1.7 million. This catchall category is up 29.0 percent for 2004.

Higher education publishing sales lost 194.6 percent in October (returns created a loss of 16.3 million); however, this category is up 1.1 percent growth for the year. Finally, the net El-hi (elementary/high school) basal and supplemental K-12 category grew 13.5 percent in October, with sales of $193.4 million, bringing year to date number up to 0.3 percent for 2004.

The Association of American Publishers is the principal trade association for the U.S. book publishing industry with over 300 members, comprising most of the major commercial book publishers in the United States, as well as smaller and medium-sized houses, non-profit publishers, university presses and scholarly societies.

NOTE: All sales figures cited in this release are domestic net sales

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