Financial analysts are predicting a 15 to 17 per cent drop in US software sales year-over-year for the month of May, the third such consecutive decline this year.

Ahead of official results from the NPD Group, EEDAR's Jesse Divinch and Wedbush Morgan's Michael Pachter have announced the anticipated decline, citing tough year-on-year comps for software that includes last year's Wii Fit and Grand Theft Auto IV.

Jesse Divinch of EEDAR said in a statement that the firm is expecting software sales for the month to reach USD 457 million, a decrease of 15 per cent over the same period in 2008.

"The lack of a sales increase was primarily driven by the next-generation home and portable software titles," said Divinch. "Unit sales are likely to decrease by 5 per cent over last year with a 10 per cent decrease in the average selling price (ASP). EEDAR believes the weak retail environment is to blame for the year-over-year decrease in ASPs."

Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter has similar expectations, predicting a sales decline of 17 per cent at USD 450 million.

"May presents another month of difficult comparisons (which resulted in March’s decline of 17 percent and April’s decline of 23 percent)," said Pachter. "Last year’s launch of Nintendo’s Wii Fit and sales of Take-Two’s Grand Theft Auto IV contributed USD 141 million and 26 percent of May 2008 total sales, posing another difficult comparison."