An upswing in the auto category, which was a bugaboo for networks last year, has a Wall Street firm predicting greater growth in the overall ad market this year than expected.
Barclays Capital has placed a 5.5% estimate on growth in the U.S. market, up from its previous 3.5%.
Barclays has become more bullish on Detroit spending, and Japan as it were, as General Motors and Toyota have offered and promoted purchasing incentives. Toyota also wants to use marketing to recover from a safety issue, as estimates for overall vehicle sales for March have been revised upwards.
An auto bump should mostly benefit local stations, Barclays said in a new report, but also sports programmers, such as ESPN.
Another contributor to Barclays' revisions is an expected boom in political advertising, which will be helped by a Jan. 21 Supreme Court ruling. It lessens restrictions on what corporations can spend backing candidates for the House and Senate.
Since network TV was helped by the Olympics, Barclays is forecasting the medium up 9.8%, changed from 7.8%. Cable is now forecast for a 6.5% jump, from a previous 6%.
Perhaps reflective of a glut of inventory, the firm did not raise its estimate for the Internet, holding growth at 8.9%.