Employment in the advertising industry-including advertising, public relations, media buying and direct marketing-fell again in September after staying flat in August. Industry employment dropped to 427,900, down 0.5% from August totals and down 2.1% from the year-ago period. But there is hope that employment should stabilize in coming months. In their quarterly third-quarter earnings reports, management at both Omnicom Group and WPP Group said they don't see more layoffs in the horizon and Havas executives told investors they have completed the bulk of the layoffs planned as part of a reorganization.
Turkey blasts rock markets: News of deadly terrorist attacks in Istanbul early in the week set the tone for a drop in the stock markets. Weak October sales at several major retailers further hurt trading in mid-week. Tech stocks rallied late in the week as investors hunted for bargains, but pharma stocks dropped after Merck scrapped an experimental drug for the second time in 10 days. Only nine AdMarket stocks were up for the week, 40 were down and Sprint Corp. was unchanged.
Advertising and media agency stocks were mixed, with newspapers hurt after several companies reported disappointing October ad linage and Interpublic Group of Cos. got no benefit from plans to sell part of its stake in Modem Media.
Advertising Age and Bloomberg's AdMarket 50 index of 50 top publicly traded marketer, agency and media companies for the week ended Nov. 21, based on stock trading data supplied by Bloomberg financial news service. All comparisons are vs. closing prices Nov. 14. Full data available on Bloomberg terminals under index BAAX.