Lauren Rich Fine, first VP, Merrill Lynch & Co., upgraded her U.S. spending outlook to 0.4% growth, up from an earlier forecast of a 1.5% drop, and upgraded her global forecast to a decline of 1.3% from a 2.1% drop. Her forecast of a 2.6% drop in non-U.S. advertising remains unchanged.
The key factors for
Newspapers will likely stay flat -- up only 0.1% -- instead of declining 1.7% as initially forecast, while network TV will grow 4.5%, instead of falling 5%. Radio will grow 4.6%, instead of 2%, and magazine advertising will decline 2%, less than the 3% fall initially forecast.
"We do believe a recovery is brewing, but it is percolating slowly," said Ms. Fine in today's report.
She noted this recovery depends on corporate spending and profitability, not consumer spending, as in recessions past. This means the recovery will be "reasonably tepid" while corporate profits remain weak.