Contact: Tina Jordan
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New York, NY, April 7, 2010–The Association of American Publishers (AAP) has today released its annual estimate of total book sales in the United States. The report, which uses data from the Bureau of the Census as well as sales data from eighty-six publishers inclusive of all major book publishing media market holders, estimates that U.S. publishers had net sales of $23.9 billion in 2009, down from $24.3 billion in 2008, representing a 1.8% decrease. In the last seven years the industry had a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.1%.

Trade sales of adult and juvenile books were steady at $8.1 billion in 2009, CAGR fell to 1.8 percent. Adult Hardbound books showed healthy growth of 6.9%, $2.6 billion in 2009, however paperbound books for adult fell 5.2% to $2.2 billion. Hardbound books in the children and young adult category fell 5.0% to $1.7 billion while their paperbound equivalent grew 2.2% to $1.5 billion.

Over the period covered by the estimated data, the CAGR for hardbound books was 1.3% for adult books and 0.6% for juvenile. Paperbound books grew 2.6% and 2.7% over the 7 years.

Mass Market paperbacks decreased 4.0% and brought the category CAGR to -2.2%. Total sales were $1.0 billion in 2009. Book clubs and mail-order fell to $588 million, a fall of 2.0%.

Audio book sales for 2009 totaled $192 million, down 12.9% on the prior year, CAGR for this category is still healthy at 4.3%. E-books overtook audiobooks in 2009 with sales reaching $313 million in 2009, up 176.6%.

Religious book sales dropped 9.0% to $659m in 2009. However over the period of the estimate it has secured steady growth with a CAGR of 2.4%.

Educational sales in the Elementary and High School (El-Hi) category, those books produced for K-12 education, fell 13.8% to $5.2 billion in 2009, and CAGR for this category was -1.4%. The Higher Education category, which includes sales of college textbooks reached $4.3 billion this year up 12.9% on 2008. This brought the CAGR for college textbooks to 5.0%.

Click here for a complete list of the preliminary estimated book publishing industry net sales for 2009 prepared by Management Practice, Inc.

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