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Jobless claims surge
The economic stat of the moment is dire: The U.S. Department of Labor this morning announced that 3.28 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance in the week that ended March 21.
“The number shatters the Great Recession peak of 665,000 in March 2009 and the all-time mark of 695,000 in October 1982,” CNBC reports. “The previous week, which reflected the period before the worst of the coronavirus hit, was 282,000, which was higher than expected at the time.”
Meanwhile, Walmart is on a hiring spree
Walmart, Bloomberg News reports, has “taken on 25,000 new employees and given offers to thousands more in the first week of a hiring push, as the biggest private employer in the U.S. scrambles to keep its shelves stocked and checkouts staffed during the coronavirus pandemic.” The company has compressed its usual hiring process, which can take up to two weeks, into as little as three hours “by eliminating formal interviews and written job offers [and] giving store managers authority to make verbal offers right away.”
Walmart previously said that it intends to hire a total of 150,000 additional hourly workers in the short-term.
More TV, please
The prevailing media narrative is that shelter-in-place mandates will be great for streaming services such as Netflix—and we’ll surely see that play out over the coming weeks and months. But according to iSpot.tv data, shared exclusively with Datacenter Weekly, traditional TV is also seeing big boosts in certain dayparts, from the perspective of ad deliveries. (An obvious caveat: TV has lost a lot of high-priced inventory due to the elimination of live sports during the pandemic. Delivering more eyeballs across lower-cost programming in cheaper dayparts is helpful, but obviously not a cure-all.)
From Monday, March 16, through Sunday, March 22, for instance:
• ABC delivered 80 percent more median TV ad impressions week-over-week to 2.4 million during its early morning daypart.
• Fox News delivered 20 percent more median ad impressions week-over-week to 635,232 in its overnight daypart.
• CNN’s early fringe median ad impressions were up 24.8 percent week-over-week to 1.5 million.
• HGTV’s median ad impressions were up 19 percent week-over-week to 700,958 in early fringe.
• Food Network’s median ad impressions were up 21.1 percent week-over-week to 320,402 during the daytime daypart.
• Telemundo’s early morning median daypart ad impressions are up 18.2 percent to 121,895.
More digital media too, please
The online extensions of many traditional media companies are also seeing surges. A spokesperson for Telemundo, for instance, tells Datacenter Weekly that Telemundo.com saw 5.3 million video views through the seven days ended March 25, which is up 30 percent vs. the prior four-week average. The two top videos during the period:
1. “Pasos sencillos para asegurar tu futuro económico” (“Easy steps to secure your economic future”), originally released on Jan. 7: 306,000 views.
2. “Cómo los emprendedores y pequeños negocios pueden disminuir el impacto del coronavirus” (“How big and small business owners can decrease the impact of coronavirus”), originally released March 13: 271,000 views.
The marketing-services branches of global consultancies account for four of the world’s five biggest digital networks, according to Ad Age Datacenter’s tally from Ad Age Agency Report 2019. We’re prepping updated figures now that we’ll publish in Ad Age Agency Report 2020, out May 4.
World’s 10 biggest digital networks
Rank / Digital network / Revenue, 2018
1. Accenture Interactive: $8.5B
2. Deloitte Digital: $5.3B
3. IBM iX: $5.0B
4. Cognizant Interactive: $4.9B
5. PwC Digital Services: $3.8B
6. Wunderman Thompson (WPP): $2.0B
7. Publicis Sapient (Publicis): $1.7B
8. Epsilon-Conversant (Publicis): $1.2B
9. Ogilvy (WPP): $1.1B
10. Havas (Vivendi): $872M
Source: Ad Age Agency Report 2019.
• “How to get Verizon and AT&T data-cap fees waived during the pandemic,” via Ars Technica.
• “Data Scientists Use Machine Learning to Discover COVID-19 Treatments,” per Health IT Analytics.
• “47,000 U.S. Stores Closed in About a Week Over Coronavirus,” Bloomberg News reports.
• “Game downloads will be throttled to manage internet congestion,” per TechCrunch.
This section of Datacenter Weekly is intended to highlight upcoming data-centric events, but as we’ve noted the past few weeks, we’ve paused that “community calendar” function as the coronavirus crisis has escalated. For now, we’re directing your attention to Ad Age’s Coronavirus Industry Event Tracker for the latest word on canceled and rescheduled conferences and other get-togethers.
The newsletter is brought to you by Ad Age Datacenter, the industry’s most authoritative source of competitive intel and home to the Ad Age Leading National Advertisers, the Ad Age Agency Report: World’s Biggest Agency Companies and other exclusive data-driven reports. Access or subscribe to Ad Age Datacenter at AdAge.com/Datacenter.
Ad Age Datacenter is Kevin Brown, Bradley Johnson and Catherine Wolf.
This week’s newsletter was compiled and written by Simon Dumenco.