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Trade Book Publisher Sales Increased Slightly in August 2017

Washington, DC; Dec. 20, 2017 – In August 2017, Trade publishers’ revenues (sales to bookstores, wholesalers, direct to consumer, online retailers, etc.) increased +1.0% compared to August 2016. For the year-to-date (Jan. – Aug. 2017) revenues were flat at 0.0%. AAP’s StatShot reports Trade Books in the categories of fiction books, non-fiction books and religious presses.

The slight revenue increase in August 2017, compared to August 2016, came from growth in Childrens and Young Adult books (up +2.9%) and Religious Presses (up +7.8%).

There was a slight decline in revenue in August and a -0.6% year-to-date decline for all tracked categories, which includes: Trade Books, PreK-12 Instructional Materials, Higher Education Course Materials, Professional Publishing, and University Presses.

Seven Month Total Trade Net Revenue by Category (in millions)*

Jan. – Aug. 2017 Jan. – Aug. 2016 Percent Change
Adult Fiction/Non-Fiction








Religious Presses




Total Trade




Trade Book Formats

Downloaded audio had another strong month with revenues up +27.6% in August 2017 compared to August 2016, and was up +30.2% year-to-date.

Revenues for print book formats were mostly up in August, with revenues flat for paperback books (-0.2%) and growth in all other print book categories. For the year-to-date revenues for print has been mixed, with mass market book declining by -11.4% to $207 million and hardback books increasing by 1.9% to $1.474 billion.

While eBooks continued to decline overall compared to August 2016 (-7.1%), and are down year-to-date (-5.3%), Religious Presses saw an increase in eBook revenue in August (+10%) and also year-to-date (11.9%.)

Seven Month Total Trade Net Revenue by Format (in millions)*

Jan. – Aug. 2017 Jan. – Aug. 2016 Percent Change








Paperback & Mass Market




Downloaded Audio




Other (physical audio, board book)




Education and Scholarly Publishing

Higher Education and PreK-12 publishers saw revenues decline during August 2017 compared to August 2016. Year-to-date Higher Education was flat, -0.1% and PreK-12 declined -3.2%.

Revenues for Professional Books increased by 3.5% and University Presses increased 4.2% in from Jan. – Aug. 2017 compared to the same time in 2016.

About StatShot

Publisher net revenue is tracked monthly by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and includes sales data from about 1,200 publishers. Figures represent publishers’ net revenue for the U.S. (i.e. what publishers sell to bookstores, direct to consumer, online venues, etc.), and are not retailer/consumer sales figures.

The Association of American Publishers (AAP) represents more than 300 book and journal publishers in the United States on matters of law and policy. Find us online at or on twitter at @AmericanPublish.