Beyonce On Course for Third Week at No. 1 on Billboard 200 Chart

Beyonce performs on stage during "The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour" at the Staples Center on December 3, 2013 in Los Angeles, CA. 

Larry Busacca/PW/WireImage for Parkwood Entertainment

Beyonce is on course to score her longest-running No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart. Based on sales forecasts from industry sources, her new self-titled set should stay put atop next week's Billboard 200 for a third consecutive week.
 
Sources suggest the album could sell upwards of 250,000 copies by the end of the tracking week on Sunday, Dec. 29. This past week, it spent its second frame at No. 1, moving 617,000 according to Nielsen SoundScan. In the album's first 10 days of release, it sold 991,000 copies.
 
If "Beyonce" is No. 1 for a third week, it will mark the diva's longest-reigning chart-topper. While all five of her studio albums have reached No. 1, her longest rule atop the list is two weeks (for both "Beyonce" and "4").

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The new Billboard 200's top 10 will be revealed on Thursday, Jan. 2.
 
As for the rest of the top 10, expect to see familiar faces like One Direction's "Midnight Memories," Eminem's "The Marshall Mathers LP 2" and Katy Perry's "PRISM." The three albums are among the many that are experiencing a surge in sales after Christmas. It's traditional to see lots of albums earn increases in the week after Christmas, as consumers redeem newly-acquired gift cards (for digital download stores, especially).
 
Another release that's selling well is Justin Bieber's new collection, "Journals," which bowed on Monday, Dec. 23. The 15-song set contains 10 previously released tunes (made available as part of his weekly Music Mondays series) and five new cuts. The project -- exclusively sold through the iTunes Store -- could sell over 100,000. However, Billboard has been informed that iTunes will not be reporting sales for the set to Nielsen SoundScan, therefore it will not appear on Billboard’s charts.
 
On SoundScan's Building chart (below), Beyonce sits atop the list, while One Direction is at No. 2. The Building tally is a precursor to the final Billboard 200 ranking -- reflecting the first four days (Monday through Thursday) of SoundScan's tracking week as reported by six major merchants.
 
As for the rest of the top 10: Eminem and Katy Perry are Nos. 3 and 5, while Garth Brooks' "Blame It All On My Roots" is No. 4. The soundtrack to "Frozen" is No. 6, while two Christmas albums are up next: Kelly Clarkson's "Wrapped In Red" (No. 7) and the Robertsons' "Duck the Halls" (No. 8). It would be surprising to see "Wrapped In Red" or "Duck the Halls" album among the top 10 next week, since this tracking week only has two days of sales pre-Christmas (Dec. 23 and 24).
 
Lorde's "Pure Heroine" (No. 9) and Miley Cyrus' "Bangerz" (No. 10) round out the top 10.

Nielsen SoundScan Building Chart
Rank Last Week, BB 200 Artist Title
1 1 Beyonce "Beyonce"
2 3 One Direction "Midnight Memories"
3 6 Eminem "The Marshall Mathers LP 2"
4 2 Garth Brooks "Blame It All On My Roots"
5 7 Katy Perry "PRISM"
6 8 Soundtrack "Frozen"
7 5 Kelly Clarkson "Wrapped In Red"
8 4 The Robertsons "Duck the Halls"
9 11 Lorde "Pure Heroine"
10 17 Miley Cyrus "Bangerz"

The Building Chart reflects the first four days (Monday through Thursday) of SoundScan's tracking week (which ends Sunday) as reported by six major merchants: iTunes, Trans World Entertainment, Best Buy, Starbucks, Target and Anderson Merchandisers. Billboard estimates that they make up about 85% of all U.S. album sales.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

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