Aegis Group, the London-headquartered global media and research group, on Monday upped its adspend forecast for 2004, citing improvements in corporate confidence.

In an update to the London Stock Exchange, Aegis said the US presidential elections and the forthcoming Olympics would bolster a market already confident with hopes of a strengthening global economy.

Aegis has accordingly lifted its forecast of 4.2% growth to 4.5%, In 2003 the market grew by 3.2%. Leading the expected leap will be the Asia Pacific region where revenues are expected to soar by around 6%.

The US market will also prosper, believes the media shop, rising to 4.7%. Even in Europe where recovery is lagging other parts of the globe, growth should reach 3.6% -- more than double last year's 1.7% rate of expansion.

The improved outlook helped Aegis shares to edge up two pence to £1.01 ($1.83; €1.44), an improvement of nearly 100% on their all-time low of £0.52 in March 2003.

Data sourced from: Times Online (UK); additional content by WARC staff