US consumer electronics spending up 8% in 2005

According to NPD Group, consumers spent $76.9 bln on consumer electronics and IT products in 2005, an 8% increase over the $71.2 bln generated in 2004. Notebook and desktop computers were a must-have for many consumers in 2005, with notebook unit sales increasing 45% and dollar volume swelling 21% over 2004. Lower prices for desktops made them an attractive purchase as well, with unit sales growing 5%, although the 8% fall in average prices led to a 3% decline in revenue. LCD TV unit sales grew 160%, while dollar volume grew 127% over 2004, as the average selling price for an LCD TV fell below $1,000. Plasma TV sales saw significant growth with a 128% increase in unit volume and a 70% increase in dollar volume, despite a decline in average prices of over 25%. Sales of MP3 players sang to the tune of a 159% increase in unit volume and a 121% increase in dollar volume over 2004. Digital cameras, even in the face of a maturing marketplace, had a picture perfect 21% increase in unit volume and a 16% gain in dollar volume.