Actually the debt ratings service projects an “advertising windfall” for virtually all traditional media in a report this morning that says auto makers will sell 14M vehicles this year, up 9.3% vs 2011. That should especially delight TV execs, according to the Moody’s Investors Service report: Last year auto companies spent $13.9B on ads, and accounted for as much as 25% of sales on cable systems, 23% for TV stations, and 12.5% for broadcast TV networks. With auto sales following improvements in the overall economy, broadcasters should enjoy “strong – perhaps even record-high – upfront sales this year,” says the report’s lead author, Neil Begley. “We expect the scatter market to be even stronger in the latter half of 2012, as new-car launches coincide with peaking political ad spending ahead of the November US elections.” As a result, he says, TV networks likely will “hold above-average levels of inventory after the upfront to take advantage of even better and potentially record price levels in the second half of the year.” The biggest beneficiaries in Big Media will be CBS, which derives about 63% of its revenues from ad sales, followed by NBCUniversal (36%), Viacom (34%), and Time Warner (21%). Disney and News Corp “are the most diversified of the media conglomerates and will therefore be the least affected by growth in auto ad spending,” Begley says.
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