Kidscreen » Archive » U.S. toy market cools, with sales up just 2% in H1 2022

The unprecedented growth of the US toy industry is beginning to level off after two years of record sales in 2020 and 2021.

According to a new report from the NPD Group, the market grew by only 2% (231 million US dollars) to reach 11.4 billion US dollars between January and June this year, with a drop in unit sales and a increase in the average selling price having an impact on the net result.

Compared to 2019, when 10 of the 11 supercategories tracked by the New York-based market research firm showed positive growth, only four are up so far in 2022. The Squishmallows line from Jazwares (pictured), which has seven of the top 15 best-selling toys for the period, contributed significantly to the growth of the plush super-category, which posted a 43% gain over the same period l last year.

The second-largest supercategory in the first half of 2022 was Exploratory Toys and Others, which grew 28% on new NBA, NFL and MLB sports trading card lines. Building sets were up 8%, driven by LEGO’s Star Wars and Technics lines. And the action figure segment also grew by 12%, with Funko Pop! movie-related collectibles and toys for Jurassic World: Dominion and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 in mind.

Based on payment data, the NPD Group concluded that consumers are making fewer trips to stores to buy toys these days and are buying less due to rising prices. And linked to this dynamic, they are increasingly turning to online retailers for cheaper solutions.

Growing by only 0.01% in the first half of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021, the number of new consumers in the toy market remains stable after an influx of 16 million in 2019 and 2020.

About Lola C. Chapman

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