RIAA Releases 2020 Mid-Year Report

The Recording Industry Association of America has released its mid-year 2020 report, which showed growth in subscription streaming more than offset revenue declines in other areas of the U.S. recorded music market. The report also detailed ways the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the music market.

Among the key findings of the report was total first-half 2020 revenues from recorded music in the U.S. increased 5.6% to $5.7 billion. Paid streaming subscriptions continued to drive the growth as the number of paid subscriptions increased by 24% to more than 72 million on average, growing subscription streaming revenues for first-half 2020 by 14% versus first-half 2019. 85% of U.S. music industry revenues in the first half of 2020 came from streaming, with 7% coming from physical product, 6% from digital downloads, and 2% from synch licenses.

At the same time, with advertising markets slowing across the economy due to the pandemic, growth in ad-supported streaming revenues slowed dramatically. Physical sales, including vinyl and CDs, were also affected by the pandemic and fell 23%.

“These are historically difficult times: the live music sector is shut down; studio recording is limited; and millions of Americans are out of work across the broader economy,” said RIAA Chairman and CEO Mitch Glazier. “While we’re pleased that the years of hard work and resources we’ve invested in streaming are driving growth in paid subscriptions, today’s report demonstrates just how much work remains to achieve a sustainably healthy music ecosystem for both music creators and fans. We must continue working to help sustain live music and venues, support gig workers and session musicians, and ensure fair pay for music on all digital platforms. Despite all the challenges from the pandemic, one thing clearly hasn’t changed – fans still love music.”



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Hollabaugh, a staff writer at MusicRow magazine, has written for publications including American Profile, CMA Close Up, Nashville Arts And Entertainment, The Boot and Country Weekly. She has a Broadcast Journalism and Speech Communication degree from Texas Christian University, (go Horned Frogs), and welcomes your feedback or story ideas at [email protected]

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