US publishers' sales decline 2.7% in first quarter

US publishers' sales decline 2.7% in first quarter

American publishers experienced a 2.7% decline in revenues in the first quarter of 2016 to $2.14bn (£1.65bn) compared to the same period in 2015, according to data released yesterday (20th September) by the Association of American Publishers (AAP).

Sales of adult titles and children’s/YA were both down, falling 10.3% and 2.1% respectively, although religious publishers saw their revenues increase 5.8%.

Sales also varied depending on format. Paperback sales were up 6.1%, whilst the download audio market saw a huge boost of 35.3%. However, the hardback market declined (8.5%), as did e-books sales (21.8%). The association does not track sales by self-published authors.

One strong area of the market was educational and professional titles, with ‘educational materials’ growing 8.6% in the quarter, whilst ‘higher education course materials’ saw a 20.3% increase in sales in during that time.

However, professional publishing was down 24.4%.

In March, the overall industry experienced a 3% fall to $501.8m (£386.5m), with trade book sales falling 5.6% to $458.7m (£353.3m).