Sales at this year's September Yearling Sale at Keeneland have declined more than 40 percent for the first time in the sale's history.

The 14-day sale ended Monday with total sales of $191,859,200, down 41.51 percent from last year's 15-day total of $327,999,100. The average price was $60,734, a 33.25 percent decline from 2008, while the median of $22,000 was down 40.54 percent from a year ago.

The total sales decline for the 66th annual sale broke the previous mark of 29 percent in 1947, while the previous largest average drop was 27 percent, also in 1947. The previous largest median decline was 21 percent in 1988. That figure has only been published since 1987.

Keeneland Sales Director Geoffrey Russell says the thoroughbred industry is no different from other markets that have been affected by global financial woes.