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U.S. Vinyl Album Sales Hit New Record High in Christmas Week 2020

U.S. vinyl album sales hit another historic high, as 1.842 million LPs were sold in the week ending Dec. 24, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. That’s the largest week for the format since Nielsen…

As predicted, U.S. vinyl album sales hit another historic high, as 1.842 million LPs were sold in the week ending Dec. 24, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. That’s the largest week for the format since Nielsen Music/MRC Data began electronically tracking music sales in 1991. The previous high was set only a week earlier, when 1.445 million were sold in the frame ending Dec. 17.

Furthermore, vinyl album sales outpaced CD sales for the week: 1.841 million vs. 1.671 million. It’s the fourth time that’s happened since 1991, and all four instances occurred in 2020.

Vinyl LP sales at independent record stores were also record-setting, as 733,000 copies were sold via indie stores in the week ending Dec. 24 — the biggest week for the format at indies dating to 1991. The previous record week came during Record Store Day 2019’s week (673,000; week ending April 11, 2019).

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Vinyl LP sales received a holiday boost in the week ending Dec. 24, as the tracking frame captured the seven shopping days leading up to Christmas Day (Dec. 25).

The top-selling vinyl album in the week ending Dec. 24 was Paul McCartney’s new studio set McCartney III, which launches atop the Vinyl Albums chart with nearly 32,000 sold – the third-largest sales week for a vinyl album since 1991.