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Broadcast Ad Revenues Surge B&C

The broadcast networks posted big gains in advertising sales in June to spur revenue growth for the second quarter of 2013, Jon Lafayette reports in B&C. The report cites figures just released by the research firm Standard Media Index.

"Total television spending was up 10% in the second quarter from a year ago. For first half of the year, TV ad revenue is up 4%," the story reports. "The broadcasters racked up a 16% increase in ad revenues in the second quarter, including more than 30% jumps at ABC, CBS and NBC in June, when the NBA Finals and the finale of 'The Voice' aired. CBS's revenues increased 27% in the quarter, ABC rose 19%, NBC gained 13% and Fox was up 8%. Univision revenues increased 28%."

The second-quarter improvement reversed what had been a downtrend, with a 5% decline in the first quarter, the piece notes. The improved results left broadcasters with a 5% improvement for the first half of the year.

"Cable network advertising revenue was up 6% in the second quarter. For the first six months of 2013, ad revenues are up 4%," Lafayette reports. "With a 31% drop in June, ESPN's ad revenues were down 7% in the quarter and 2% so far this year. ESPN's ratings were down 32% in the quarter, a plunge ESPN described as an aberration caused by a drop in NBA games and Euro Championship soccer matches. The drop meant that for the quarter, ESPN fell to second place in ad revenue behind TNT, which was up 9%."

The report adds: "Big gainers in the quarter among the top 20 cable networks by revenue included History, up 16%; HGTV, up 15%; FX and Lifetime, up 11%; and Discovery, up 10%. Big declines were registered by E!, down 20%; AMC and Nickelodeon, down 10%; and ABC Family, down 7%."