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Tax-Software Sales, Revenue Decline

Port Washington,
N.Y. – With Tax Day now in the country’s
collective rearview mirror, The NPD Group reported mixed results at best for
boxed tax-preparation software sales.

NPD reported the average selling price (ASP) during the 2010 tax
season for the software was almost flat, but ASPs have increased 33 percent
since 2006.

However, offsetting this increase is a 25 percent decrease in
units shipped during this same period. Year-over-year unit sales decreased 6
percent, with revenue declining 7 percent.

Stephen Baker, industry analysis VP at NPD, blamed the
availability of free tax software.

“The advent of free tax software has forced the tax publishers to
refocus their selling strategies,” said Baker, adding “They now concentrate on
software with more features and bells and whistles for the do-it-yourselfers
who need more robust tax software.”