US July sales disappoint analysts

August 15th by Neil Long

Total US games console software sales for July are four per cent lower than expected by analysts at $317 million, based on the latest NPD figures.

NPD’s data shows a nine per cent year-on-year fall in games software sales, with an 18 per cent drop compared with June sales of $388 million. Year-to-date sales are up year-on-year by 10 per cent at $2.68 billion, compared with $2.43 billion in 2004.

July’s strongest seller was EA’s NCAA Football 2006, with Take 2’s GTA: San Andreas, Activision’s Fantastic Four, THQ’s Destroy All Humans and Nintendo’s Pokemon Emerald also continuing to perform well in the US.

NCAA Football 2006 on PS2 and Xbox, Fantastic Four on PS2, Microsoft’s Halo 2 Map Pack on Xbox and Pokemon Emerald on GBA were the only titles projected to have sold over 100,000 units.

“The downside to our forecast of $335m was primarily due to a 16 per cent decline in unit volume due to weaker than expected catalogue sales of older titles,” industry analyst Wedbush Morgan commented in a report on the figures.

“We do not expect significant market reaction to the data”.

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