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Analyst: US sales trends will remain negative until GTAV

Sterne Agee analyst does not foresee turnaround until Rockstar’s open-world game arrives in September, believes BioShock Infinite sold as many as 750,000 units in March.


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The NPD Group will report United States industry sales tomorrow, and the results will not be pretty, nor will they turn around anytime soon. That's the opinion of Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia, who told investors today that March sales are expected to be down 10 to 15 percent.

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Negative trends will continue until the release of Grand Theft Auto V in September followed by the launch of Microsoft and Sony next-generation platforms either in October or November, he argued.

Bhatia said BioShock Infinite is likely to be the best-selling title in March, with an estimated sellthrough in the US of 700,000 to 750,000 units on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 combined. The NPD Group does not track PC software. BioShock Infinite will help publisher Take-Two Interactive see its March sales rise 70 percent year-on-year, Bhatia said.

Other "key" titles for March included Gears of War: Judgment and God of War: Ascension, which suffered during the month, according to Cowen & Company analyst Doug Creutz.

Tomb Raider was also called out as a high-profile March title. And though the reboot enjoyed the strongest opening week in franchise history, publisher Square Enix said this title failed to live up to sales expectations.

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