VSS issued the brief report at the American Business Media annual spring meeting.
In the first two months of this year, b-to-b ad spending was up 2% to 4%, a trend that VSS expects to continue, relatively unaffected by the war in Iraq. Growth in gross domestic product, newly developed drugs and hardware upgrades are expected to boost ad spending, according to VSS.
However, the firm indicated that several ad categories, such as telecommunications, will likely remain weak. The trade show outlook was more "nebulous," as a result of SARS and reduced travel in the wake of the war in Iraq.