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Nintendo hails Wii U sales success in the US

Shares jump on positive Christmas.

Nintendo has hailed sales of the Wii U in the US and investors have responded in kind.

More than 460,000 Wii U units were sold in December, according to the NPD Group, which means the Wii U has now sold nearly 890,000 units in the US after 41 days on the market.

Nintendo compared the amount of money the Wii U has generated versus the amount of money the Wii had generated after the same time period: the Wii U has set tills ringing to the tune of $300 million in the US. After 41 days on sale the Wii had generated just over $270 million.

"While the Wii launch established new benchmarks in the United States, Wii U has surpassed its predecessor in perhaps the most important category: revenue generation," said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America's executive vice president of Sales & Marketing.

"The demand for the Deluxe SKU, which was essentially sold out at retail this holiday, and the strong attach rate of New Super Mario Bros. U, shows that we have the value and the games to drive momentum in 2013. We look forward to offering great new experiences and bringing smiles to millions of new faces throughout the year."

It's a somewhat unfair comparison, given the Wii U is more expensive than the Wii was at launch (the Deluxe is $350, the basic is $300 and the Wii launched at $250), but Nintendo of America won't care: the money is rolling in at a time when it is much needed.

In total, Nintendo sold more than 2.65 million hardware units in the United States in the month of December. 2012 marked the 11th consecutive year that Nintendo has sold at least eight million hardware units in the US. New Super Mario Bros. U is the best-selling Wii U game in the US, and has now sold more than 580,000 units, what amounts to an attach rate of more than 65 per cent.

As for Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo's handheld sold more than 1.25 million units in December, crossing the 7.7 million units sold life to date mark in the US. In December New Super Mario Bros. 2 became the fourth Nintendo 3DS title to surpass one million units sold in the US. It's sold 1.45 million units life to date. "Nintendo 3DS continues to outpace the historic sales rate of Nintendo DS," Nintendo noted.

The ageing Wii managed to outsell it's younger brother. It sold nearly 475,000 units and crossed 40.8 million sold life to date in the US. Ubisoft's Just Dance 3 became the 10th Wii game to sell more than five million units.

And finally, the DS, which sold nearly 470,000 in December. It has sold a whopping 53 million units life to date in the US.

Nintendo's US sales performance did wonders for its share price: The stock climbed 5.6 per cent to close at 9070 yen, its biggest gain since the middle of September 2012.

Microsoft took time to blow its own sales trumpet, too. The Xbox 360 ended 2012 as the best-selling console in the US, as expected, shifting 1.4 million units in December - nearly a million more than the more expensive Wii U.

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