A Wall Street firm noted that U.S. ad spending in the April-June period was below the first quarter, suggesting that the ad market had a bumpy
spring. On Tuesday, Nomura reported a 4.6% bump across all sectors in the second quarter, below the 5.8% in the first three months of the year.
Still, growth in the current quarter should easily crush last year, with the Olympics and political ads reaching Olympian levels -- at least with dollars spent.
Nomura cited some slower ratings and a slower scatter market at broadcast and cable networks as contributing to the second-quarter slowdown. TV is one of two sectors with strong performances (helped by local TV) as Nomura broke the ad market down into three arenas: online advertising booming with double-digit growth; TV up in the mid-to-high single-digit range (with some political money helping) and “flat-to-down for everything else.”
There has been some talk about the redoubtable telecommunications category possibly retrenching. Nomura said spending was down 3% in the first five months of 2012. Another historically strong category, pharmaceuticals, was down 4%.
Google is Nomura’s top stock pick in the online space, with search and display advertising still grabbing share. It is also bullish on the struggling Facebook, where shares have dropped below $20, offering a price target of $31.50 along with a “buy” rating with its huge user numbers.