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December Comic Sales Down

Graphic Novels Up

Published: 01/11/2011 12:00am
Comic and graphic novel sales for the final month of 2010 were mixed, with comic sales down and graphic novels up vs. the year ago period.  Diamond Comic Distributors reported comic sales down 7.5% and graphic novels sales up 26.7%, for a combined comparison of a 2.2% increase vs. December of 2009. 

A change in shipping patterns probably contributed to that improvement.  Diamond did not ship new product to its retailer customers the last week of 2009, but did for the last week of 2010.  December 2010 sales would have undoubtedly shown a decline vs. December 2009 had shipping patterns been the same. 

Diamond reported Q4 2010 comic sales down 4.7% and graphic novels up 17% vs. Q4 2009, for a combined improvement of 1.7% vs. the previous year. 

Diamond previously reported that 2010 comic, graphic novel, and magazine sales (combined) were down 3.5% in 2010 vs. 2009 (see “2010 Comic Sales Down 3.5%”).  The year-end shipping change probably also kept that number from being worse than it was (by perhaps 1% of sales). 

ICv2 did its own calculations, based on the Top 300 Comics and the Top 300 Graphic Novels, for the full year 2010.  Those numbers showed a 4.7% decline in comic sales, a 1.5% decline in graphic novel sales, and a 4% decline in combined comic and graphic novel sales in 2010 vs. 2009.  ICv2’s numbers show bigger declines than Diamond’s numbers (4.65% decline in comic sales, 1.02% decline in graphic novel sales, and a 3.5% decline in combined comic and graphic novel sales), which include titles with sales below the Top 300.  That indicates that sales on the titles that chart below the Top 300 dropped less than the sales of the titles on the Top 300 list.  Diamond’s numbers, since they include more titles, are a better reflection of the over-all market. 

We’ve made a correction to our report on November comic sales (see “YTD 2010 Comic Sales Down 4.64%), for which the information originally supplied by Diamond was incorrect.  The net change of the correction was positive for the month, which eked out a .24% increase in comics and graphic novel sales vs. 2009.

For an overview and analysis of comic sales in December, see "'Batman: The Dark Knight' Tops December."

For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during December, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--December 2010."

For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels shipped during December, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--December 2010."


For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during November, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--November 2010."

For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels shipped during November, see
"Top 300 Comics Actual--November 2010."

For an overview and analysis of the best-selling comics and graphic novels in November, see "Hat Trick--Top Comic Under 100K."  For an analysis of the dollar trends in November, see "2010 Comic Sales Down 5.79%"

For our index to our reports on the top comic and graphic novel preorders for January 2000 through December 2010, see "ICv2's Top 300 Comics and Top 300 GNs Index."

 
 
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