LONDON: Global marketing activity ended 2015 much as it began, according to December's Global Marketing Index (GMI), although a similar headline figure to that of January does not reveal the diverging paths taken by different regions and media during the course of the year.

The headline GMI for December stood at 55.0, down on the January figure of 57.7, but still well within positive territory – an index of 50.0 indicates no change.

Europe began the year brightly, on an index of 58.1 and ended it in more or less in the same place, recording a figure of 58.2 in December. Asia-Pacific, meanwhile, had dipped from 58.5 to 54.2 over the same period.

But where the Americas had performed particularly strongly in January, rising 4.1 to 57.3, by the end of the year the region had slumped to 51.7.

The Global Marketing Index, compiled by World Economics, provides a unique monthly indicator of the state of the global marketing industry because it tracks current conditions among marketers and their expectations in the three key areas of marketing budgets, trading conditions and staffing levels.

On the first of these, the index for marketing budgets, the year-end figure of 53.4 was down 2.2 percentage points on January and World Economics noted the yearly average was slightly below the previous two-year trend of 53.3.

Europe once again held steady over the year as a whole, ending with a marketing budget index of 57.3 compared to January's figure of 58.2.

Asia-Pacific fell from 56.3 to 53.1 over the year while the Americas dived into negative territory, declining from 53.1 to 48.3.

And when marketing budgets were broken down by medium, the data showed a thirteenth consecutive month where the value of the global TV index – at 49.8 in December – was below the 50.0 no-change level.

Both digital and mobile advertising, however, continued to perform strongly, with index values of 74.9 and 72.2 respectively.

"The headline GMI reading for December indicates growth in business activity continuing," said Ed Jones, chief executive at World Economics. "Marketing budgets are still expanding across the world apart from the Americas where spending has fallen for the past four months."

"The trend rise in spending on mobile and digital media has continued at the expense of traditional media in all regions," he added.

Data sourced from World Economics; additional content by Warc staff