Lower Estimates For 2016 TV Political Ads

Local TV stations will see 15% fewer political advertising dollars in 2016 than expected -- with other TV media also getting lower revenues.

Revising earlier estimates, Kantar Media/CMAG says TV stations will get $2.8 billion for political advertising -- down $500 million from its $3.3 billion estimate made in July 2015.

Steve Passwaiter, VP/GM of Kantar Media/CMAG, released new projections at the TVB Forward conference on Thursday.

In addition, Kantar lowered estimates for local cable/satellite advertising as well -- down 6% to $750 million from $800 million. Broadcasting/cable networks will take a bigger hit -- down nearly 70% to $100 million from an earlier $300 million estimate.

Still, Kantar says total revenue for TV stations will be up versus the last big political advertising season -- the presidential election in 2012, when stations pulled in $2.7 billion.



Also at the TVB Forward event, Wells Fargo analyst Marci Ryvicker lowered her projection for TV stations' political advertising revenue to $2.65 billion from a $3 billion-plus estimate.

These lower estimates can be largely attributed to sharply lower advertising spending from Republican President Donald Trump -- just $78 million, according to Kantar/CMAG. By comparison, 2012 Republican candidate Mitt Romney spent $550 million.

In the last two weeks, Sinclair Broadcast Group lowered its political forecast, while Gray Television withdrew its political advertising guidance altogether. Many TV stations groups' stock prices declined sharply on this news.

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