British firms raise marketing budgets despite Brexit uncertainty – survey

British companies increased their marketing budgets during the second quarter despite uncertainties about the economy as the UK looks to exit the European Union, a survey showed on Wednesday.

The IPA Bellwether report showed that over 28 percent of its survey panel recorded an upward revision to their 2017/2018 marketing budgets during the second quarter, compared with around 15 percent that recorded a fall.

The survey, conducted by IHS Markit on behalf of the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, said on balance a net 13.1 percent of UK companies indicated they would increase their 2017/2018 marketing budgets in the second quarter, higher than the 11.8 percent in the first quarter.

Around 300 UK marketing professionals, primarily from Britain’s top 1,000 companies and across all key business sectors, were interviewed for the survey.

Growth in ad spending is expected to be a marginal 0.6 percent in 2017 and expected to stagnate in 2018, hurt by “underwhelming” performance in business investment and softness in consumer confidence, the survey showed.

British inflation unexpectedly slowed last month for the first time since October, but Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said on Tuesday that the “big picture” for inflation remained the same.

“The election result has thrown further uncertainty into an already volatile environment. It is inevitable that this has had a knock-on effect on UK plc,” IPA’s director general Paul Bainsfair said.

The increased marketing spend was broadly concentrated in the digital space during the second quarter, with the latest survey showing that internet budgets were raised to the greatest degree in just under a decade, according to the report.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Arathy S Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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