Leading the field in ad pages in October was the Drugs & Toiletries/PERQ category, up 5.1%. Pages for the Travel category were flat, and all other categories were down. Telecommunications continued to be the hardest-hit, with a 47.4% decline. Finance, Business & Advertising fell by 22.8%; Computers by 14.2%; Software by 17.8%; Manufacturing & Electrical Equipment, Materials & Components by 12.4%; Horticulture & Farming by 26.3%; Services, Direct Response & Classified by 13.8%; Retail by 10.8%, Home & Building by 1.9%; and Automotive by 14.4%.
Four categories showed improvement in ad spending in October compared to last year. Drugs & Toiletries/PERQ were up 10.8%; Travel was up 9%; Home & Building up 4.2%; and Horticulture & Farming up 1.2%. The remaining categories were down: Finance, Business & Advertising by 17.5%; Telecommunications by 40.3%; Computers by 18.8%; Software by 19.3%; Manufacturing by 6.8%; Services, Direct Response & Classified by 6.9%; Retail by 5.4%; and Automotive by 8.8%.
“In spite of continued weakness in the Telecommunications sector, the rate of decline in year-to-date ad spending and pages is still moving in the right direction,” said Gordon Hughes, President & CEO, American Business Media. “As of September, spending was down 17.4%. The October data shows spending down by 16.7%. We remain cautiously optimistic that this trend will continue in the remainder of the fourth quarter.”