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The NPD Group, Inc. (www.npd.com) has reported a 7% decline in US prestige beauty retail sales (products sold primarily in department stores) in the first half 2009, totaling $3.7 billion, and a 10% drop in prestige fragrance retail sales from the same period last year. Both women’s and men’s prestige fragrances were down 10% from a year ago.
New fragrance launch sales, meanwhile, generated $57 million in revenue, but were down 17% from the prior year due to the 31% decline in women’s new launch activity. Conversely, men’s new launch activity increased 23%. Likewise, premium price fragrance juices (prestige fragrances priced at $100 and above, excluding fragrance ancillary or gift set items) rose 9% in dollars and 6% in units, while those priced between $75 to $99 increased 2% and 1% in dollar and unit terms, respectively. These two components accounted for almost 30% of prestige fragrance sales in the first half of 2009.