U.S. ad spending was down 0.5% in the first half of 2007, according to Nielsen, but Internet ad spending continued to grow, up 23.6%, the biggest jump of any sector.
Spot TV in smaller markets was up 3.2% and Spanish-language up a fraction at 0.2%. Among the decliners, cable TV was down 0.3%, network TV 3.8% and large-market spot TV 4.6%.
Ad spending by the top 10 companies was down 7.3% to $8.3 billion, with seven out of the 10 cutting their budgets. General Motors led the way, down 27.7% to $954 million. Of the three gainers, Verizon Communications was the biggest, up 2.7% to $733 million.
It was bad news for stations that rely on car-dealer ads that the automotive category had the greatest dollar-volume decline, down $671 million, or 10%.