Record Drop In Advertising Revenue In Q2

09/21/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Aug. 20 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. advertising revenue declined 1.5 percent in the second quarter, the steepest drop since Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. began tracking industry sales five and a half years ago.

A slump in local newspaper and television ads is spreading to national categories, Bernstein analyst Michael Nathanson said in a report today. Nathanson, in New York, has a ``market perform'' rating on CBS Corp., Walt Disney Co. and News Corp., and predicts Time Warner Inc. and Viacom Inc. will outperform the Standard & Poor's 500 Index in the next year.

``Given the ongoing pressure on the U.S. consumer, if back- to-school sales are disappointing, retailers could cut advertising,'' Nathanson wrote. ``The most exposed media to retail advertising are local newspapers, radio networks, radio stations, and TV stations.''

A 10 percent drop in magazine ads in the quarter may be a ``bad omen'' for national TV ads, Nathanson said. Magazines were hurt by shrinking spending from food, pharmaceuticals, toiletries and computer companies. Those four sectors account for 45 percent of broadcast TV advertising, he said.

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