Overall Music Sales Down Halfway Through 2016, But Vinyl Jumps 12%

Robbie Daw | July 11, 2016 3:13 pm

Today Nielsen released its mid-year report on 2016 music consumption in the United States, and as one would expect, streaming is doing gangbusters while overall sales continue to slide dramatically. The bright spot for brick and mortar and online retailers is that, as has been the trend for the past decade or so, buyers are snatching up vinyl more than ever. The format jumped 12% over the same January through June period one year ago, to 6.2 million in sales.

In looking at the big picture, however, music sales are down 14%. And while vinyl keeps surging, digital album sales have slid 18%. Ouch.

As for the most dominant form of music consumption in ’16, streaming increased 59% over the same six-month stretch in 2015.

“In the past year we have seen a continued shift in the music industry from a buying model to a streaming model,” Nielsen’s SVP Industry Insights, David Bakula, said in a press release. “Streaming now makes up nearly 50% of the overall volume, while we continue to see declines in digital purchasing.”

So, what albums, if any, have you purchased in 2016? And do you think there’s another blockbuster, a la Adele‘s 25, waiting in the wings for release this year?

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