Christian Retailing

Religious book sales slide continues Print Email
Written by Eric Tiansay   
Thursday, 22 October 2009 03:19 PM America/New_York

Sales of religious books sharply decreased 13.8% in August, continuing a yearlong trend as overall book sales increased by 0.9% to $1.55 billion and were up by 2% for the year, according to The Association of American Publishers (AAP).

The month's sales for religious books were $58 million, with the category's sales down by 9.2% for the year. Sales of religious books have been on the decline, decreasing 9.3%, 22%, 12%, 7.1%, 11.4%, 19% and 9% in July, June, May, April, March, February and January, respectively.

The bright spot in the AAP report was E-book sales, which continued to rise in August, seeing a 189.1% increase for the month to $14.4 million--reflecting an increase of 177.3% for the year.

The Adult Hardcover category was up by 12.3% in August with sales of $110.6 million, but year-to-date sales were down by 12.2%. Adult Paperback sales increased 3.2% for the month--posting $152.7 million in sales, but the category was down 9% for the year.

The Children's/Young Adult Hardcover category decreased by 12.9% for the month--with sales of $84.5 million, but year-to-date sales were up by 14%. The Paperback category for the same age was down by 0.2% in August with sales totaling $69.4 million, but sales rose by 1.7% for the year.

Audiobook sales decreased 12.5% in August--with sales totaling $12.9 million, and the category's year-to-date sales were down by 25.1%.

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