Book Sales Fell 1.8% in 2009, to $23.8 Billion, AAP Says
Jim Milliot -- Reprinted with permission of Publishers Weekly
Book sales fell 1.8% in 2009 to $23.9 billion, according to estimates released this morning by the Association of American Publishers. Figures are based on reports from 86 publishers who participate in the AAP's statistics program and Bureau of the Census data. The decline in 2009 follows a 2.6% drop in 2008. Trade sales were nearly flat in the year, slipping 0.1%, to $8.1 billion as adult hardcover sales rose 6.9% and children's paperback sales increased 2.2%. Sales of trade paperback declined 5.2% and children's hardcover sales fell 5.0%. The star of the year, of course, was the e-book category that AAP estimates grew 176.6%, to $313.2 million.
In other categories, mass market paperback revenue fell 4.0%, to $1.0 billion, and book club and mail order sales dropped 2.0%. Sales in the religious book category are estimated to have declined 9.0%, to $658.7 million. Sales of spokenword audio were reported down 12.9% (The Audio Publishers Association will issue its own statistics in late May).
Sales in higher education rose 12.9% to $4.3 billion, but sales in the elhi segment declined 13.8%, to $5.2 billion. Professional book sales fell 2.9%, to $3.3 billion.
The AAP estimates that total book sales grew at a compound growth rate of 1.1% in the 2002 through 2009 period.