CD Prices Falling?

Don’t tell anyone, but CD prices are starting to fall — in some cases dramatically. Best Buy is selling the new Spider-Man 2 soundtrack for $8.99 this week. They have Breaking Benjamin for $6.99. Target does too, as well as The Killers for $6.99, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs for $6.98 and Ozmatli for $5.98. Franz Ferdinand and Modest Mouse have both seen their latest releases in the $8.99-$9.99 range.

The drastically reduced prices seem to be short-term sales, most likely instigated by record companies, designed to boost sales and exposure. Though good luck finding anyone talking about it. There’s plenty of news about Universal’s 5 percent price drop (though apparently some retailers are keeping prices high and pocketing the difference), as well as the recent price fixing lawsuit accounting for a minor price rollback. But most of those stories have to do with regular CD prices, lowering stickers from $15.99 to $13.99. Nobody’s talking about these 44 percent price dives.

And maybe they should. CD sales in the first half of 2004 were up 7 percent over 2003. Prices under $10 prompt impulse buys. It worked for me: I bought the Spider-Man 2 soundtrack solely on the merits of Dashboard Confessional’s “Vindicated.”

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