In a recent report, UBS media analyst Michael Morris cut 6% or $11 billion from an expected $183 billion estimate to $172 billion for U.S. advertising spending in 2009.
Morris says that overall TV ad spending will drop 8% or $4 billion to $44 billion from 2008's numbers. Local TV stations, in particular, will be getting the brunt of the drop--down 12% or $3.4 billion to $26 billion.
Even without the bad news on the economy, with a possible long recession on the way, 2009 was poised to be a down year--especially for local TV stations. It's an off year in which there are no Olympics events or big political campaigns, which tend to significantly boost overall numbers.
Estimates are that local TV will grow a bit in 2008--5% to 8% over 2007--but not realize its usual double-digit percentage increases for an Olympic/political year.
National TV network will fare better than local TV, with broadcast networks down 2.9% or $500 million to $17 billion--with cable down 2.6% or $700 million to $27 billion, says Morris.