NEW YORK: Global advertising expenditure climbed by 10.6% last year, reaching $503bn (€355bn; £310bn) overall, The Nielsen Company has reported.

Based on ratecard estimates, the research firm stated 23 of the 37 markets had double-digit annual expansions.

This could represent growing confidence among brand owners.

North America enjoyed a 6.2% lift, totals standing at 8.1% concerning Europe, 10% when discussing Asia Pacific, 21.2% across the Middle East and 26.7% regarding Latin America.

Randall Beard, The Nielsen Company's global head, advertiser solutions, said: "2010 was the year of recovery for the advertising industry."

"All global regions and every traditional medium recorded a positive turnaround, with highest percentage adspend increases coming from Middle East/Africa and Latin America."

The US, the world's biggest ad market, generated a 5.6% improvement, having witnessed a 9% contraction during 2009 as a whole.

In China, marketers boosted budgets by 10.9%, although this number actually lagged behind the comparative ratings of 28.1% posted by Indian companies, and 19.1% for Taiwan.

Argentina was the best performer in Latin America, as the area benefitted from 37.2% growth on the part of financial services providers and a 23.8% increase from media owners.

Turning to Europe, Belgium, France, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK all saw expansions in and around the 10% mark.

Elsewhere, the United Arab Emirates constituted the sole nation monitored to suffer a decline, sliding 4.4%, while Japan was largely flat, increasing 1.3%, and Spain attracted an additional 0.4%.

In terms of global industry outlay, automotive had a 20.3% improvement, financial brands raised their investment by 17.9%, and fast-moving consumer goods manufacturers rose 14.6%.

The industrial and services sector supplied a 9.2% gain, media grew 6.4%, entertainment jumped 5.5%, distribution channels rose by 3.4%, and healthcare firms were up 1.7%.

Meanwhile, FMCG's share of expenditure improved by one percentage point, to 24.9%.

"Fast moving consumer goods and emerging markets will continue to lead global advertising trends," Beard predicted.

Television ad sales rose by 13.1% when measured against the previous 12 months, as this medium's proportion of spending attained a new peak of 62%, surpassing the 60.6% registered in 2009.

Radio returns leapt 8.5%, newspapers rose 7% and magazines by 4.9%.

Last year also confirmed the importance of major events in boosting adspend. The second quarter of the year, where the pace of growth reached 13%, coincided with the World Cup in South Africa.

"The 2010 FIFA World Cup brought the attention of hundreds of millions of soccer fans, and not surprisingly, advertisers followed with significant spending," said Beard.

"It presented an excellent opportunity for advertisers to jump back into the market, revitalising ad spend in multiple countries."

Beard added: "Advertisers are already thinking about how they'll capitalise on next year's Olympic Games in London, which could prove to be as much an advertising event as it is a sporting event."

Data sourced from The Nielsen Company; additional content by Warc staff