NEW YORK: Few eyebrows were raised at the latest fiscal forecast for local broadcast TV by the US Television Bureau of Advertising. Bureau president Chris Rohr delivered a fistful of gloom in a single pithy sentence: "These are not happy numbers to report, but they are the new reality."

The TBA's revenue estimates are based on a consensus of Wall Street and financial analysts, independent research and input from station representatives. This data, says Rohr, indicates that full-year 2008 spot revenue will decline 7.1% instead of coming in flat as previously thought.

Next year, moreover, offers even fewer reasons to be cheerful.

Spot TV revenues are forecast to sag between 7%-11% versus September's estimate of 1%-5% growth. Local spot is expected to drop by 4%-8% (compared to the earlier forecast of +2% to minus 1%).

National spot, meantime, will be reeling on the ropes after plunging somewhere between 11.5% and 15.5%. September's forecast predicted a fall of between minus 7% and -10%.

Data sourced from AdWeek (USA); additional content by WARC staff