NEW YORK: Advertising Age's AdMarket 50 – an index of the top fifty publicly-listed advertisers, media companies and agency groups - co-produced with Bloomberg, plunged 5% on Thursday to the symbolic equivalent of the Mariana Trench, its lowest level since it launched in 2000.
Among adland's big players affected by the ongoing malaise was Interpublic Group, whose largest longstanding client is the near-moribund General Motors. IPG's stock plunged 21.1% to $2.61, its lowest point since 1986.
Newspaper groups were similarly affected by the gloom epidemic: McClatchy Company plummeted 21.8%; The Gannett Company fell 12.5%; and New York Times Company slid by 10.3%.
The ongoing chill even hit the online sector.
Yahoo plunged 20.9% to $9.14 – its lowest price since February 2003 – after Microsoft ceo Steve Ballmer reiterated his disinterest in buying the ailing search portal. Yahoo's current market capitalization ($12.7 billion) is now 71.5% below the value of Microsoft's $44.6bn takeover offer rejected in May. Meantime, minutes released yesterday of the Federal Open Market Committee's October meeting, reveal that officials expect full-year 2008 real GDP growth of between 0.0% to 0.3%; and full-year 2009 GDP of -0.2% to 1.1%.
Even Google's stock fell 5.8% to $280.18, its lowest price since August 2005. To view the current AdMarket 50 stock prices click here.
State the minutes: "Participants generally expected the economy to contract moderately in the second half of 2008 and the first half of 2009, and agreed that the downside risks to growth had increased.
"While some expected an improving financial situation to contribute to a recovery in growth by mid-2009, others judged that the period of economic weakness could persist for some time."
Data sourced from AdAge.com; additional content by WARC staff