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Zenith Optimedia Revises Ad Spending Forecast Slightly Upward

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NEW YORK -- In its latest advertising spending forecast, Zenith Optimedia Group has revised its expectations to a decline of -0.3 percent to $220 billion in 2002 versus last year, compared to its previous forecast of -0.5 percent in spending in the world's seven largest ad markets.

In the US, Zenith says spending will decline by 0.1percent, to $135 billion. Last June, Zenith predicted 2002 U.S. spending will decline by 1.2 percent.

The $1.6 billion difference is driven mainly by heavy spending in local markets by political candidates, auto, retail, telecomm companies and movie studios, the report says, noting that local TV, local radio and out-of-home inventory is tight in the second half, and therefore expect prices to hold firm. While Zenith sees firmness in the current TV scatter market its forecast for network, cable and syndication TV are unchanged.