Consider the spike in GDP in the second half of 2003 preceded an increase in CD sales in early 2004. Now, with GDP slowing, might that be impacting CD sales?
Turns out yes:
"Music industry hopes for a recovery from a long slump may have been premature. Disc sales rose by almost 10% during the first nine months of 2004, but have dropped by approximately 20% for October and most of November. As of Friday, November 19, year-to-date sales were ahead of the previous year by slightly more than 5%, indicating that the surge seen earlier in the year may not carry through the winter holiday season, a time when the music industry typically enjoys up to 40% of its annual retail sales.
Perhaps not coincidentally, on Thursday, November 18, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) announced the filing of copyright infringement lawsuits against 761 computer users, part of a continuing campaign to contain the file-sharing phenomenon. Recent suits include students at Amherst College, Boston College, Bridgewater State, Iowa State, Northeastern, and the University of Massachusetts."
What? Are CDs merely another consumer product subject to the vagaries of the marketplace and business cycle? Quelle horror!
Note: I haven’t seen this report anywhere else yet; I’ll try to find confirming data on this . . .