LONDON: Marketers continued to be broadly optimistic in February according to the latest data from Warc's Global Marketing Index (GMI), with a slowdown in the growth of marketing budgets offset by improving trading conditions.

The headline GMI figure, which takes into account marketers' expectations for staffing levels as well as trading conditions and marketing budgets, inched upwards to 58.0 from 57.9 in January, on a scale where values above 50 indicate a positive trend.

The most marked improvement was seen in the Americas, where the headline GMI was up 2.5 points to 59.0. Europe saw a more modest rise of 0.4 points to 59.1, while Asia Pacific dipped 0.5 points to 57.2.

Asia Pacific's performance was due in large part to a perceived deterioration in trading conditions, as the region's index on this measure slipped from 62.5 to 61.3. But Europe remained stable on 62.8 while the Americas continued to recover, easing upwards to 61.2. This is now the fourth month in a row that the trading conditions index has exceeded 60, however, indicating widespread confidence as regards this metric.

The global index for marketing budgets was down half a point in February to 55.6, but once again the Americas were bouncing back, with that region's index rising 1.1 points to 55.1. Europe was steady on 56.4 while Asia Pacific's 56.5 was a slight decline on the previous month's figure of 56.7.

Lastly, the index of staffing levels continued to rise, helped by a sharp increase in the Americas where the index jumped from 58.5 to 60.7. That level of optimism was not quite shared by Europe, which was up 0.9 points to 58.0, while Asia Pacific, on 53.9, registered a marginal 0.1 point decline.

Suzy Young, Data and Journals Director at Warc, said: "The outlook for global marketers remains very positive in February, as overall business conditions start to show consistency across all regions for the first time."

Data sourced from Warc