The rate of growth of UK advertising expenditure halved from the second to the third quarter, according to data from the Advertising Association and Warc, while full-year forecasts have been revised downwards

A slowdown in the third quarter was expected after the boost to figures given by the FIFA World Cup earlier in the year. The latest data from the Advertising Association/Warc Expenditure Report – a definitive measure of advertising activity in the UK, being the only source that uses advertising expenditure gathered from across the entire media landscape – show that UK adspend grew 4.2% to reach £4,307m, or half the 8.5% figure registered in the second quarter.

At the same time, AA/Warc revised down their annual forecasts in the light of a more cautious outlook for UK GDP and renewed concerns over the eurozone. They are now predicting 2015 adspend growth of 5.7% (down from 6.5%) with full year 2014 forecasts adjusted down from 6.4% to 5.8%.

Despite the more conservative projections, 2014-2015 will be the strongest consecutive growth years for UK adspend this century. “Two years growth at twice the rate of the economy is hardly a recipe for pessimism but adspend isn’t immune to pressures on other sectors,” said Tim Lefroy, chief executive of the Advertising Association.