Advertising growth slows

Market to grow 4.3% this year

LONDON — Global ad spend is predicted to grow 4.3% this year and 4% next year, despite the economic downturn, media agency ZenithOptimedia said Tuesday.

But the outfit has scaled back its predictions for growth following the turmoil in financial markets. In June, it had said worldwide ad spend would grow 6.6% this year and 6% next year.

“The reason for the downgrade is primarily the financial shock caused by the bank failures during the latest phase of the crisis in financial markets, which has spread uncertainty and undermined confidence in the wider economy,” said ZenithOptimedia.

While growth forecasts for the U.S. and Western Europe have been halved, developing markets, including Central and Eastern Europe, and Latin America, are expected to show healthy gains.

By 2010, Russia and Brazil look likely to be ranked in the top 10 ad markets for the first time, pushing Spain and Oz out of the ranking.

Blighty is predicted to overtake Germany and become the third biggest ad market by 2010, behind Japan and the U.S, which remain ranked in second and first place respectively.

While online advertising continues to surge — the Internet’s market share is forecast to increase from 10.2% this year to 13.8% in 2010 — TV’s share of ad spend will remain stable, dipping slightly from 37.5% in 2008 to 37% in 2010.

ZenithOptimedia predicts that luxury goods, travel and entertainment are most likely to suffer pressure on their ad budgets as consumers tighten belts.