A new study into record sales has revealed that old albums and singles are outselling new releases for the first time.
The somewhat depressing stat comes from Nielsen Soundscan, who have been keeping track of music sales and patterns since 1991. Today, they claim that 76.6 million "catalog" albums, i.e. those originally released more than 18 months ago) have been sold between January-June 2012.
This comes in direct comparison to the lower figure of 73.9 million sales for albums released as new in the same period.
There are numerous factors behind this, including record labels selling older material at lower costs and many people purchasing MP3's of music they previously owned on other formats.
Additionally, music fans mourning the loss of a star often sees a spike in old music soaring up the charts. It is no coincidence that one of the biggest catalog sellers of 2012 so far is Whitney Houston.
Nielsen analyst David Bakula also adds that people who were not previously music fans are beginning to purchase more albums. "I really, truly do believe that there probably is a consumer that is buying music here that wasn't buying music in the past," he says.